Environmental sustainability technologies to benefit from green bond

22-04-2020 | By Rob Coppinger

Clean transportation, renewable energy, sustainable water and circular economy adapted products could benefit from the net proceeds of a $400 million green bond issued by Analog Device Inc (ADI).

The company’s green bond issuance consisted of a $400 million aggregate principal amount of 2.950% senior unsecured notes due April 2025. For ADI, this is the first successful closing of a green bond offering in the semiconductor industry. The net proceeds of this green bond could be used to finance, or refinance, the development of a number of eligible environmental technologies. For ADI, the technologies must offer sustainability benefits, furthering the company’s commitment to environmental sustainability.

Technologies are eligible if they could help protect and regenerate the environment and if they are in alignment with the United Nations’ own sustainable development goals. Technologies ADI identifies as eligible are, renewable energy, energy efficiency, green buildings, eco-efficient production, sustainable water and wastewater management, pollution prevention and clean transportation.

“At ADI, we are committed to engineering a sustainable future and this is an important next step in driving sustainable growth for all ADI stakeholders. We are proud to lead the semiconductor industry with our green bond issuance,” said Analog Devices Inc’s president and chief executive officer, Vincent Roche.

Circular economies

Other categories for the green bond eligible technologies are, circular economy adapted products, production technologies and processes. A circular economy adapted product is not just a product that can more easily be recycled. The concept of the circular economy is to preserve the value of a product for as long as possible with refurbishment, repair and reuse being central to its life cycle. 

Circular economy production technologies and processes are for better recycling, to transform waste materials into something useful. Examples include turning waste glass into ceramic products that can be used to create table-tops or for flooring and walling applications. Another example of these circular production technologies is turning old phones, laptops and printers into the filament feedstock used for additive manufacturing. Another aspect of circular manufacturing is the extraction of metal alloys from electronics, such as printed circuit boards, for their reuse.

For clean transportation, ADI already has a role in the evolution of electric cars. The company’s precision battery management system integrated circuits are to be used for the Rimac C_Two fully electric hypercar which is capable of speeds of up to 258 miles per hour. Other ADI products, the Automotive Audio Bus and SHARC digital signal processor, are being used by Chinese automotive manufacturer BYD Co. Ltd to help it realise more energy efficient vehicles.

In connection with the green bond, ADI worked with Sustainalytics, a leading global provider of environmental, social and corporate governance research and ratings. Sustainalytics reviewed ADI’s green bond framework and opined that it is credible and aligns with the four core components of the Green Bond Principals 2018.

By Rob Coppinger

Rob Coppinger is a freelance science and engineering journalist. Originally a car industry production engineer, he jumped into journalism and has written about all sorts of technologies from fusion power to quantum computing and military drones. He lives in France.