Why is this important to us?

We know that we make vital financial and social contributions to our communities. However, it is easy to overlook these contributions without metrics demonstrating our substantial impact. As a result, it is our goal to promote our current metrics and develop better measurements moving forward to best demonstrate the value we create.    

The commercial imperative

What kind of challenges do we face?

Our stakeholder relationships are critical to the operation of our business. These relationships are strengthened by demonstrating the value our company creates for these stakeholders. However, measuring economic and social value for a company of our size and scope can be a challenge. 

What do we need to do?

Our corporate responsibility governance structure is critical to monitoring and measuring our impact. Established in 2015, our Sustainable Development Council (SDC) oversees the implementation and measurement of our 10 sustainable development outcomes in the U.S. The SDC is continuing to lead this work and refine the measurement of our impact in 2016 and 2017. We will also continue to analyze our economic contribution data and highlight this impact with our stakeholders. The publication of our second integrated report is an important step towards holistically representing both our social and financial contributions.  

What is the potential to create value? 

We already know that our contributions are significant. However, our ability to fully demonstrate these contributions will strengthen our relationships with our stakeholders, thereby strengthening our overall operations.   

Measuring success

A Sustainable Development Council (SDC) exists at the national level to oversee both corporate responsibility and sustainable development initiatives. The SDC is responsible for driving measurement and metrics around the 10 sustainable development outcomes. In 2016, the SDC conducted our second nationwide self-assessment, measuring our performance against each of the 10 sustainable development outcomes. The self-assessment is being used as a management tool to measure our progress and develop metrics. It will continue to be updated annually. In 2016, the SDC also oversaw the implementation of our second annual internal and external U.S. stakeholder survey. The goal of this survey was to garner feedback and measure progress on our sustainability initiatives. Additional information about the survey is detailed in the stakeholder engagement section of this report. 

The publication of our second integrated report for 2016 is also a major advancement towards the goal of publicly highlighting our measurements and metrics around social and financial value creation. We are the first country within ArcelorMittal’s western hemisphere footprint to publish an integrated report. 

Case studies: Impact measurement

On Capitol Hill: Communicating
ArcelorMittal’s contribution through
government relations

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ArcelorMittal’s government relations department is critical to our work in outcome 10. This team communicates our societal contributions to many important stakeholder groups, most notably local, state and national government officials.  Their work often involves sharing our societal contributions with these stakeholders as they consider policies that may impact our work.  Multiple important issues made 2016 a notable year for the department, seeing success on important trade legislation that provides enhanced tools for the US government to combat trade practices that negatively impact the company and industry.  Below is an overview of their work in ensuring that ArcelorMittal’s contributions are recognized and valued.

How does the government relations department communicate ArcelorMittal’s impact?

Ultimately, sustainability is at the core of the government relations department’s work. They focus on the sustainability of our company and the sustainability of the steel industry as a whole. Because ArcelorMittal was created through a merger 10 years ago and our name is relatively new in the market, we must make an extra effort to communicate our brand, contributions and impact to our government stakeholders. This is both a challenge and an opportunity. Employment statistics are one of the key measurements that the government relations team uses to convey our impact, especially with legislators. This includes our employment data and economic contribution through wages, benefits and taxes.

Who are the stakeholders the government relations department works with most often?

First and foremost, the government relations team works directly with local, state and federal government officials to convey and enhance our company’s societal impact. However, they also work closely with employees at ArcelorMittal to help them understand governmental interests and the impact of key legislation or regulations on our business. The team also collaborates with customers and suppliers on issues that jointly impact our sustainability goals.

How does the government relations team use ArcelorMittal’s sustainable development narrative to communicate our impact to our stakeholders?   

Our sustainable development narrative and 10 SD outcomes are the next evolution in the work ArcelorMittal has been doing for years. ArcelorMittal is an industry leader in transparency and sustainability efforts. We believe in the circular economy and incorporating life cycle analysis into our work. We are committed to transparency and participate in voluntary programs and reporting initiatives to advance our efforts. We are actively involved in the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Buildings, Better Plants Program and we are a partner of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR® program. In addition, we have a long history of sustainability reporting and transparency both through our internal reporting mechanism and the Climate Disclosure Project. Our government relations team communicates all of these actions and initiatives to our governmental stakeholders as appropriate.   

What are the “hot topics” for our government relations team?

Areas that are always a focus for the team include trade, infrastructure, environment, energy, defense, tax policy and employment law. Trade is a major issue in the steel industry, but due to an unprecedented influx of imports and harsh economic conditions in recent years, the issue was at the forefront of our government relations efforts. Unfairly traded imports have a dramatic impact on our ability to command a fair price for our products and operate our facilities at sustainable levels. Imports that are sold in the U.S. at dumped or government-subsidized prices are considered unfairly traded. Imports are dumped if, among other criteria, they are sold at prices below their home market prices or the producer’s cost to manufacture.

Find out more about the impact of unfair trade and our 2016 trade cases in the operating context section of this report.
Telling our steel story: communicating our contributions

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When ArcelorMittal recognized its 10-year anniversary in 2016, we celebrated by recounting the decade’s numerous stories of achievement and excellence . Still, many of our facilities in the U.S. have been operating for far longer, some for a century or more, in so-called “rust belt” communities. 

Our past is rich and our roots are deep, but the ArcelorMittal story is a fairly new one and has been shaped by a changing world, country and industry. Moreover, as we embrace a circular economy and operate in an increasingly global marketplace, our stakeholders’ views and expectations of us have also evolved. 

So, how do we tell our story so it honors the profound impact steel has had historically – on the economy, jobs, environment, communities – while educating stakeholders about ArcelorMittal USA’s role and contributions today?

Our work on outcome 10 – to ensure our contributions to society are measured, shared and valued – was especially critical in 2016 as American manufacturing took center stage in a divisive election year. 

ArcelorMittal’s focus is on making steel and creating value for our stakeholders, not endorsing candidates or getting involved with election politics.  But the nation’s debate on manufacturing afforded an opportunity to share our story, engage with elected officials and the public, and highlight several key issues that are paramount to our sustainability. Top among these issues is the need to strengthen and enforce U.S. trade laws.

In August, our Cleveland, Ohio, facility hosted U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker and U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown. They met with ArcelorMittal and United Steelworkers’ leadership to better understand the challenges faced by domestic steel producers following a surge of steel imports caused by massive overcapacity in the global marketplace. The visit shined a light on efforts by ArcelorMittal USA and other major steel producers to file petitions against unfair trade across a range of steel products. It was one of many engagements that ArcelorMittal had with government officials on the topic of trade throughout the year. 

“Cleveland’s ArcelorMittal is a testament to the productivity of our steelworkers and how competitive our steel manufacturers can be. But that success will be threatened if we don’t deal with steel overcapacity long-term,” said Senator Brown. “We must hold China to its trade obligations and that starts with finally reducing steel overcapacity that hurts U.S. workers.” 

Shortly after the visit by Pritzker and Brown, and on the heels of the Republican National Convention held in Cleveland, local media also got interested in our steel story. ArcelorMittal Cleveland and the United Steelworkers Local 979 opened their doors to a team of journalists and photographers from the Cleveland Plain Dealer and ideastream. The six-page special feature, titled “Heart of Steel: A Cleveland Survival Story,” reported on the plant’s changing role in a longtime steel town: "Above all, it's a story of adaptation. Today, ArcelorMittal Cleveland is among the world's most productive steel mills. It has survived because it has changed. It produces a new kind of steel” (referring to the new advanced grades of steel the Cleveland plant supplies for lighter weight, fuel-efficient vehicles).

As the Plain Dealer series suggested, creating a sustainable future will require ArcelorMittal USA to continue to adapt and innovate, but also to actively communicate in our communities about our goals and progress.