BASF reaffirms commitment to circular economy

Chemical giant BASF has announced its membership of two Ellen MacArthur Foundation programmes, to further advance its existing circular economy solutions.

Founded in 2010, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation works with businesses, government and academia to build a framework for an economy that is restorative and regenerative by design.

The transition from a linear to a more circular economy can bring significant changes in business models and provide additional value across industries and to society. The aim is to develop an attractive and viable alternative to today’s linear “take, make, dispose” model. The chemical industry plays a pivotal role in this transition due to its innovation power.

“Circular economy is much more than waste management. It requires substantial changes in terms of behaviour and technology use. Circular economy thinking cannot be restricted to a company’s own operations. It needs to run across the value chain to embrace and provide value to customers and suppliers,” said Dirk Voeste, vice president Sustainability Strategy at BASF.

“A smart circular economy concept has to be integrated within product development, production processes, use and re-use systems right from the beginning.”

BASF joined the Foundation’s “Circular Economy 100” programme to drive not only the concept within its own operations, but also the realisation of circular economy together with other innovators and organizations. The engagement in the multi-stakeholder platform provides additional opportunities to learn and collaborate with partners along the value chain.

“Established to enable organisations to learn, build capacity, network and collaborate, the CE100 brings together leaders and innovators from around the world, to unlock new opportunities arising from a circular economy approach. We are pleased to welcome BASF to the program, to offer their unique perspective on the key role chemistry plays in developing new processes and solutions across the value chain,” said Casper Jorna, CE100 Program Lead.

BASF has also become a member in the Foundation’s “New Plastics Economy” initiative that brings together key stakeholders to rethink and redesign the future of plastics, starting with packaging. Here, BASF will work closely with the initiative’s participants to accelerate the transition towards a circular economy for plastics, while ensuring that benefits such as food protection are upheld.

“As a manufacturer with a broad plastics portfolio for the automotive, household appliance, construction and packaging industries, we can contribute to the Foundation’s platform a wealth of expertise in plastics, their properties and recycling opportunities”, said Dr. Jens Hamprecht, Head of market development Biopolymers, BASF. “For example, we can also share our significant experience with biodegradable and partially bio-based plastics, like our ecovio, in applications such as the collection of bio waste.”

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