Sustainability adventures with John Golightly

John spearheaded the founding of the SCC and was recently named its chairperson. John is passionate about helping to shape the industry's approach to tackling climate change, believing that collectively we can have a bigger impact than acting alone.   

We interview John Golightly, Senior Director, Sustainability, Climate, Global EHS. John spent the end of last year in Egypt, where he was invited to speak on behalf of ASM at COP27 about the newly launched Semiconductor Climate Consortium (SCC).

COP27 sounds very exciting; what exactly did you and SCC do while there?   

The SCC and its Founding Members were announced the week before COP27, so I went to COP27 to share the kick-off and build a network of interest to bring partnership opportunities. Even though I had been working on the SCC for over a year, it was not until late August 2022 that we knew we had the momentum and membership to make it happen. At that point, we quickly reached out to try and secure a platform at COP27.

A couple of climate advisory services offered us time slots on their stages and pavilions, with a moderator supporting the first panel discussion in which I participated, where we discussed the three pillars of the SCC – Commitment, Transparency, and Ambition.

The next day we held an official kick-off announcement of the SCC, where Al Gore joined and did a 15-minute keynote. He is a board member of Apple and is well-versed in our industry and climate challenges, so he weaved a great narrative together that left us inspired and ready to continue. A panel discussion followed, hosted by SEMI. The panelists at this event were me, representing ASM, and representatives from three other SCC Founding Members.  

Tell me about some of the other highlights of your trip.

The highlight for me was, of course, meeting Al Gore. This was a huge validation of the importance of the SCC and all our actions. We are doing the right thing and heading in the right direction. It was also an honor to be a part of a panel discussion at COP27. We had some significant industry and climate representatives in the audience, and the feedback we received was very positive.   

On a more personal note, a highlight was briefly swimming in the Red Sea. We had a full schedule the few days I was there, but I found 20 minutes one afternoon between events to take a dip. It was fantastic.  

What else have you been working on recently?   

Our Annual Report was released in March. The Report is vital to tell our story, share our successes, and ensure that we adequately disclose our performance. You can read all our latest sustainability updates here. Oh, and I’m honored to have been elected to the Governing Council of the SCC as its chairperson. So, there's a lot of work on that front as well!   

Has your outlook changed; any deeper sense of urgency or hope for the climate challenge?   

My outlook has not changed. I knew from the beginning that the SCC would be a "long haul" endeavor, and the key was that we did not have time to waste. When I say "long haul," I am alluding to a couple of decades. We hope the consortium will be active for at least 20 more years.  

An ideal state will be that we are so successful that the industry can reach Net Zero before 2050. However, we recognize this is not a quick win; it will take perseverance and strong continuity to bring in the best and brightest sustainability professionals, passing the baton each decade until we reach our goal.  If you believe in something, you must be persistent.  

One ambition or opportunity you have for the next 12 months?   

One of my ambitions is to see the SCC through its inaugural year by getting a big win or two for the industry and the planet.

Want to learn more about sustainability at ASM?

Read more on our core sustainability pillars, efforts, and progress.