CEO, Solvay Sodi
Embracing the superhero within Becoming an SDG Pioneer is like becoming a sustainability superhero, fighting to make our world greener and fairer. What's your special power for this mission?
Solvay Sodi is one part of the Solvay Group. The entire company is made of superheroes. Every member of every team is involved in the success of our sustainability agenda in Bulgaria. My goal is to lead the company, making the world a better place by the effective distribution of our products, soda ash and bicarbonate. These are key ingredients in the products that affect our everyday lives and contribute to a more sustainable future.
Origin story: Please briefly describe your journey towards becoming an SDG Pioneer.
I am a Belgian citizen of Greek origin. I was born in the Congo and married a Bulgarian.
With Solvay, I have had the opportunity to work in different countries in Europe and Asia. This has brought me different and valuable experiences. At Solvay Sodi, the largest soda ash plant in Europe, we have been working for several years to find solutions to make our current plant a sustainability flagship.
Turning passion into purpose: Your SDG Pioneer recognition shines a spotlight on your incredible work. Please explain the work for which you are being recognized as an SDG Pioneer and how your interest in this field developed.
Solvay Sodi has announced a very ambitious Sustainability Roadmap to achieve an energy transition. This will allow us to reduce our carbon footprint by 40 per cent by 2027, end the use of fossil fuels by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Our goal is to extend our sustainability mindset on topics related to nature, biodiversity and DEI initiatives.
Every epic tale has its challenges: Please share some challenges and battles you've encountered while pursuing your SDG ambitions.
We cannot ensure our competitiveness and long-term production capacity alone. Strong support from the government and local communities is necessary to achieve an affordable transition towards sustainable soda ash. Another challenge is to find available
energy sources at a competitive price. Last but not least, we need financial incentives at national and EU levels to further our sustainability efforts.
Accomplishments: As part of your SDG journey, what stands out as the most rewarding? Please describe a moment that made you feel like you were unlocking a new level of impact.
At Solvay, the most important value and No. 1 priority is our employees’ safety and well-being. When our employees return home safe and healthy, that is an everyday reward. In addition, we place great value in our energy transition pathway. We achieve impact with this project by increasing the combined combustion of biomass. This plan is already operational and was the first concrete step in our Roadmap.
Next chapters: What’s next in your career and journey? Please give us a sneak peek!
Our next step is to accelerate the achievement of the SDGs by ensuring that our products are produced and handled in a technologically and digitally advanced state-of-the-art facility. The next step in our process is innovation. Our teams are constantly working to revolutionize the Solvay process. In our vision for 2030, Solvay Sodi is a globally competitive company, benefiting from its strategic location, size, cost efficiency, agility and reliability.