On August 6, 2018, the research consultancy nova-Institute published a position paper entitled “Renewable carbon is key to a sustainable and future-oriented chemical industry.” In order to “develop into a sustainable sector,” the chemical industry, including the plastics industry, must move away from ”fossil raw materials such as crude oil, natural gas and coal for good” and start using “nothing but renewable carbon as a raw material in organic chemistry,” the institute argued in its press release.
“[T]he modern world is inconceivable without its versatile polymers unless you are prepared to accept considerable sacrifices or higher greenhouse gas emissions,” the nova-Institute further stated. Therefore, industry needs to use the “only three sources of renewable carbon:” 1) Mechanical or chemical recycling of existing plastics, 2) biomass and direct CO2 use of fossil point sources, and 3) biogenous point sources and direct air capture. The “complete transition to renewable carbon” should be “supported by politics and accepted by the population,” the nova-Institute stressed.
In addition, the institute outlined a future scenario of converting the chemical and plastics industry to sustainable resources and discussed political measures “to initiate and accelerate the change towards renewable carbon.”
The position paper can be downloaded free of charge in English and German.
nova-Institute (August 6, 2018). “Renewable carbon is key to a sustainable and future-oriented chemical industry.” Bio-based News
nova-Institute (August 2018). “nova-paper #10: renewable carbon is key to a sustainable and future-oriented chemical industry.”