Responsible Consumption and Production
Since the start of industrialization at the beginning of the 19th century, the impact of human activities on our planet has grown continuously. As well as the many positive achievements during this time, there have obviously also been several negative consequences: The risks for our natural resources can be seen in many areas, such as climate change, deforestation of tropical rainforests, leaching of arable land, and overfishing the oceans. Our consumption patterns have been putting the wellbeing of future generations at risk for some time. More than 7 billion people worldwide currently consume natural resources well in excess of what our planet can provide. According to the World Bank, 129 million hectares of forest were lost just between 1990 and 2015 (source: World Bank. World Development Indicators 2016). The Living Planet Report 2016 from the World Wildlife Fund reveals that global populations of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles declined by almost 60 percent between 1970 and 2012.
For companies, establishing responsible consumption and production means providing better products while using fewer resources. For consumers, it means making more specific buying decisions and being more aware in terms of our consumption. Both sides are equally obligated as regards reducing waste and strengthening recycling systems.
With its purchasing volume, Evonik has a significant influence on the environment and society. We make sure that our suppliers comply with sustainability standards and pay close attention to certain raw materials, especially renewables. In the Evonik Group, the share of renewable raw materials is about 9 percent. As a specialty chemicals company and signatory to the Responsible Care Global Charter, we continuously work towards using fewer raw materials. Our production plants are resource conserving and we continuously optimize our processes. The responsibility for this lies with experts in the operational units, with our Process Technology unit, and with our SEEC team (Simplification, Excellence, Empowerment and Cooperation). We also develop new, groundbreaking technologies. Our engineers have named the latest innovation “LiMA”. The acronym stands for “Leading in Methacrylates” and is a particularly efficient and sustainable process to produce methyl methacrylate.
We offer our customers resource conserving, energy efficient solutions with which they can improve their ecological footprint and differentiate themselves positively from the competition.
Our amino acids for animal feed and the associated technical services for our customers improve the feed conversion ratio, reduce their carbon footprint, prevent overfertilization, and lessen water pollution. AMINOFootprint®2.1 from the Animal Nutrition Business Line is a web-based app for laptops and tablets that enables users to calculate the ecological footprint in animal nutrition. The F@ces (Feed Additives Commercial Electronic SolutionsTM) portal provides more functions, such as fully automatic dispensing systems.
Our silica-silane system for “green” low rolling resistance tires reduces fuel consumption by up to eight percent and also gives the tires a better grip on wet roads.
Our oil additives give construction machines and commercial vehicles more power with reduced fuel consumption, which also helps reduce emissions. They also contribute towards prolonging the life of the materials that are used.
The Personal Care Business Line developed CAREtain, a platform for sustainable innovation that provides customers with detailed information about the sustainable properties of cosmetic raw materials with the aim of making cosmetic products more sustainable.
Buildings consume about 40 percent of global energy. Our durable CALOSTAT® insulation panels made from silica can be recycled and are flame proof. They achieve extremely good insulation values, protect against heat and cold, and effectively reduce energy consumption.
With our four products alone – “green” tire technology, amino acids for animal feed, foam stabilizers for insulation materials, and oil additives in hydraulic oils – we enabled greenhouse gas savings of about 95 million metric tons of CO2 equivalents in 2016 (measured over the entire life cycle of the respective applications) compared to conventional alternatives.