11 Mar 2020, 13:22
Sören Amelang

German chemical makers connect with engineers to find path to climate neutrality

Clean Energy Wire

The German chemical industry association VCI has teamed up with the country's engineering association VDI to develop concepts aimed at reaching greenhouse gas neutrality by 2050. The associations said they had agreed to launch the platform "Chemistry4Climate" with support from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to "discuss future proposals and develop concrete concepts" with a broad-based group of experts on how to slash emissions from the chemical industry and parts of its value chain. "VCI and VDI assume that these approaches will also be important for achieving CO2 neutrality in other branches of industry," they stated in a press release.

The platform's remit will go beyond the chemical industry's proposals on how to reach climate-neutrality by 2050 published last year, the associations noted. "Technologically, we have a clear perspective for our industry, but that alone will not get us anywhere," VCI head Wolfgang Große Entrup said with reference to unsolved questions regarding the roll-out of renewables and ensuring a power supply at affordable prices. The associations said they would also invite experts from the chemical industry's labour union, IG BCE as well as from environmental NGOs, consumer associations and ministries to a broad stakeholder dialogue to achieve a broad strategy consensus.

Industry is Germany's second largest emitter of greenhouse gas emissions - trailing the energy sector. Around half of its emissions come from companies making steel, cement and chemicals. The majority of these emissions cannot be tackled with conventional methods because they are not directly related to the use of fossil energies, but are released during the chemical or physical transformation of materials (so-called process emissions).

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