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ASI Launches Certification Program Addressing Aluminum Sustainability

The Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) launched a new Certification program for the aluminum value chain, focused on responsible production, sourcing, and stewardship of this important industrial metal. The new Certification program will cover all stages of the value chain for aluminum, including bauxite mining, alumina refining, aluminum smelting, semi-fabrication, product design and manufacturing, and recycling.

“This is a really pivotal moment for ASI.  [This] launch marks the start of a new certification that will embed sustainability and human rights principles into the production, use, and recycling of aluminum, and is the culmination of many years of collective effort,” said Daniel Weston, chair of the ASI Board and general counsel and global head of Corporate Affairs for Nestlé Nespresso SA.

The ASI is a standards setting and certification organization aimed at recognizing and fostering the responsible production, sourcing and stewardship of aluminium. It was incorporated as a not-for-profit entity in 2015, and has a global membership that is open to all interested organizations. ASI members include associations (The Aluminum Association, European Aluminium, etc.), production and transformation companies (Alcoa, Rio Tinto, UC Rusal, etc.), industrial users (Audi, Jaguar Land Rover, BMW, etc.), downstream supporters (Apple, Inc.), civil society organizations, and general supporters.

ASI’s Standards Committee oversaw public consultation processes in 2016 and 2017 to develop and finalize the Standards, supporting guidance, and assurance model. ASI’s Indigenous Peoples Advisory Forum liaises with the board and two representatives participate in the Standards Committee.

“ASI’s key strength is its robust multi-stakeholder governance and standards-setting process,” said Weston. “With a growing global membership, we have an opportunity to make significant impact.”

ASI members can now seek Certification against the following ASI Standards:

  • The Performance Standard covers critical issues for the entire aluminum value chain including greenhouse gas emissions, waste management, material stewardship, biodiversity, and human rights.
  • The Chain of Custody (CoC) Standard links responsible production with responsible sourcing and thus increases the emphasis on sustainability issues in procurement.

Implementation of both Standards should see the first ASI Aluminum available from 2018 or 2019. The first ASI Accredited Auditors were announced in November 2017 and additional applications are in process.

“Supply-chain certification programs like ASI are becoming increasingly important for customers and stakeholders, who seek assurance that companies’ sustainability practices are genuine,” Dr Fiona Solomon, chief executive officer of ASI. “Through extensive stakeholder participation and consultation, ASI has designed Standards that provide a shared platform to address key issues and create B2B incentives for their implementation. We are excited about the next steps as member companies work towards achieving the first ASI Certifications in 2018.”

ASI’s Standards have been launched in English and will be translated into a range of other languages in 2018.

Key topics such as biodiversity (including ecosystem services and protected areas), climate change, recycling, and human rights will continue to be the focus of ASI Working Groups, to prepare for future revisions of ASI Standards and Guidance and support peer learning.

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