Joining forces to make a real impact
The chemical industry still relies heavily on fossil resources, which contributes to climate change. The new CEO-led Global Impact Coalition is set to pave the way to net-zero emissions by 2050.
Six percent. This is roughly the chemical and plastics industry’s share of global greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to the combined amount of Germany, France, the UK and South Korea. The reason for this is that the sector still relies predominantly on crude oil as the starting point for its products, which releases CO2 during processing and utilisation.
It’s obvious that this is no future-oriented approach. The oil age is becoming obsolete, and the chemical industry is paving the way for the non-fossil era. The latest milestone on our journey to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 is the formation of the Global Impact Coalition, a CEO-led alliance of seven visionary international chemical companies including Covestro. Incubated by the World Economic Forum, it encompasses a number of lighthouse projects to create low-carbon emitting production technologies and foster innovative ways of plastics recycling.
However, this is easier said than done. Since in many cases, end-of-life plastics are difficult to be sorted out of waste streams, and even if so, they are often made up of many different components which can hardly or not at all be separated. Yet I’m confident there will be further progress now thanks to the new Coalition.
One project Covestro is very much embedded in, is the emergence of a new R&D Hub, based in the Netherlands and hosted by TNO, an independent scientific research organization. Here, we are working together with other chemical companies on new solutions for waste processing with lower carbon emissions and enhanced circularity. If promising, we will file for intellectual property rights in different regions, eventually creating spin-offs outside the Coalition for piloting.
Collaboration and partnering – this is the essential thing. And that is why we are building an expanding network which already includes 70-plus senior chemical industry executives. And to enable high-impact project implementation, we are increasing collaboration with a wide range of suppliers, value chain partners, policymakers and financial institutions.
When will you join us?