Spotlight on responsibility
Ten years of MTU sustainability reporting
A journey toward a sustainable future
We are taking this reporting anniversary as a chance to look back over our sustainability management, our first Sustainability Report, and the progress MTU has made and chronicled in publications over ten reporting years.
Comprising 46 pages, our 2011 Sustainability Report covered our sites in Germany and was devoted entirely to the new MTU Principles that the company had rolled out in 2009. The theme of these principles was “We shape the future of aviation,” which already touches on the topic of sustainability. Now, ten reports later, much has changed for society, for the industry and for MTU. Sustainability has become one of the most important topics and an essential part of climate action. While we are heading for a future that will present us with many challenges, we also have plenty of opportunities in the present to pave the way for a better and more inclusive world. This is why the tagline of our 2021 Sustainability Report is “Acting for tomorrow, today.” But rather than being a departure, sustainable action has been the MTU way for many years—as is reflected in our mindset and strategies—and we are making steady progress in a number of key areas.
Since the publication of our first Sustainability Report, the demands on both the company and its reporting have been rising steadily. The Sustainability Report has long since become a core publication in which to lay out our sustainability activities and the progress we are making. More and more, companies are measured by their “purpose”—in other words, what they contribute to society beyond simply generating value for their shareholders. Our company has already declared its purpose in the MTU Principles: We shape the future of aviation. Yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Milestones in our sustainable development
2007: Launch of our Clean Air Engine agenda
To make engines cleaner, quieter and more efficient, MTU launches its Clean Air Engine (Claire) technology agenda. It combines key technologies to produce a commercial engine that, by 2050, will consume 40% less fuel, emit correspondingly less CO2 and generate 65% less noise. Divided into three stages, Claire aims to achieve the goals defined by the European aviation industry and research sector’s Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) for reducing carbon and noise emissions.
2011: MTU joins the UN Global Compact
The UN Global Compact is a unique sustainability initiative in which companies, countries and NGOs have agreed to pursue the vision of a sustainable and inclusive future. By joining the initiative, MTU commits itself to upholding ten universal principles. These principles for respecting human rights, ensuring fair working conditions, protecting the environment and preventing corruption have since become important guidelines of responsible corporate governance.
2011: MTU’s first Sustainability Report
MTU publishes its first Sustainability Report for the 2011 business year and in accordance with the internationally recognized standards of the Global Reporting Initiative. Although the scope of that report is limited to our sites in Germany, since then we have expanded our sustainability management and reporting to cover the entire Group. Today, we report on eight fully consolidated sites across two continents and a workforce of more than 10,000 employees.
2018: MTU commits to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals
At a United Nations summit, the international community of states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, agreeing to pursue the goal of ensuring that economic progress goes hand in hand with social justice and ecological responsibility. At the core of the 2030 Agenda are 17 Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs for short. MTU commits to the UN 2030 Agenda and supports the realization of the SDGs in the areas of education, climate action and environmental protection, sustainable innovation and industrialization, equality of opportunity, safe working conditions, and partnerships for a fairer and more sustainable future.
2021: Launch of our Sustainability Program 2025+
MTU develops its sustainability strategy further in order to set more medium- to long-term goals. The result is the Sustainability Program 2025+. MTU’s sustainability management is based on six fields of action: Corporate Governance, Products, Production & Maintenance, Employees, Procurement, and Society.
2021: Start of our ecoRoadmap
MTU plans to make operations at its production site in Munich, which is also the company headquarters, climate neutral by the end of 2021. To this end, we launch the ecoRoadmap initiative aimed at a gradual 60% decrease in CO2 emissions by 2030.
COO Lars Wagner named MTU’s Chief Sustainability Officer
You have taken on the role of Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO). What does this position entail?
a cause that’s close to my heart”
We have formally established a point person specifically for sustainability topics within the company. Key sustainability decisions are made by the full Executive Board. But we’re also noticing that sustainability is increasingly becoming a more important part of our relationships with various stakeholder groups. Our investors and business partners are interested in this topic, as are the media, the public and of course our employees. Given this range, sustainability topics continue to be a priority for the full Executive Board. However, as CSO, I will be responsible for ensuring that our sustainability management holds its strategic course.
In this role, I’ll be working closely with our Corporate Responsibility Board, and I hope to provide momentum for sustainability initiatives.
What aspects of sustainability are particularly important to you?
Climate action is understandably one of my top priorities. And as COO, our Claire technology agenda and ecoRoadmap also fall within my scope of responsibility. But I’m also looking forward to tackling further issues. This area is so broad that, for a long time now, we haven’t been able to view sustainability topics in isolation. For example, whenever we talk about emissions, we also talk about very personal aspects such as mobility. When it comes to sustainability management, departmental distinctions are of secondary importance. Responsibility for sustainability, like for quality, is overarching, with everyone at MTU playing their part. By establishing the role of CSO, we wanted to make it clear that sustainability affects us all.
What was your first official act as CSO?
There have already been several. Through our Claire agenda, ecoRoadmap, our MTU Green Europe initiative and preparations for Germany’s new Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains (LkSG), we’re in the process of making some key decisions and setting the course for the actions we will take over the next few years and decades.
How important is sustainability to you personally?
Sustainability is a cause that’s close to my heart and it offers a range of opportunities. Regarding mobility, I switched to an all-electric car back in 2019, and occasionally take the suburban train to work. At home (but also at MTU) we try hard to not create too much garbage, take care to avoid wasting water and energy, and buy regionally produced food whenever possible. And together with others at MTU, several years ago I helped launch a “social day” for managers in the Operations division. We had to pause it for a while due to the pandemic, but we’re starting it up again now. Our efforts usually go toward bringing a bit more joy into the lives of children in need.