The products of the chemical industry are used in almost all value chains. In order to achieve climate neutrality for Germany and Europe, and ultimately for the global economy, the transition to climate-friendly production of chemical products is an important requirement.
The use and transformation of carbon-based feedstocks is a fundamental process to produce plastics and other organic molecules, which make up most chemical products. To produce these materials, fossil fuels are used both as raw materials as well as energy sources to fuel large-scale linear production processes. While a significant part of fossil feedstocks used by the chemical industry is burned during the chemical production processes, their production and refining are also major sources of greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, plastics and other organic products are ultimately wasted and burned, thus polluting the environment, and releasing their carbon in the form of CO2. This means that eliminating this source of greenhouse gas emissions requires a set of coherent strategies that substitute fossil feedstock with renewable carbon sources and use renewable energy to sustain an increasingly resource-efficient and circular economy.
With our climate positive chemistry project, we develop concepts integrating processes that reduce the generation of emissions, amplify the chemical industry's capacity to create value for society and create carbon management solutions that result in a positive effect on the climate.
This project is being developed in dialogue with stakeholders from academia, industry, civil society, and policy, and is carried out in cooperation with Carbon Minds GmbH and ETH Zurich.