Welcome to the sixth RoadToBio newsletter. Our roadmap for increasing the bio-based portfolio and improving the sustainability of the European chemical industry continues to shape up.
In this newsletter we will discuss the criteria for selecting the most promising opportunities for the chemical industry to change from fossil-based to bio-based production. This is a critical task for the RoadToBio project as these opportunities will be further investigated as full scale business cases which will be the key input for the development of our roadmap.
A carefully designed survey, a questionnaire followed-up by interviews, has been conducted among the industry stakeholder group. The results of the survey have provided valuable insights into the priorities of the chemical industry when choosing for new bio-based products to be included in their portfolio.
Do you want to be part of this effort and give your input to the Roadmap? Then join the next workshop on 19 June 2018 in Brussels.
Best wishes/ Kind regards
On behalf of the RoadToBio consortium
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The stakeholder represented a wide spectrum of chemical industry sectors including some of the key actors in the development of bio-based chemicals and products.
The stakeholder representatives provided their opinion concerning the mid and long term perspective of the European bio-based industry, which petrochemicals are likely to be replaced by bio-based chemicals and which industry sectors are likely to achieve the highest growth of bio-based products.
Development of new products is driven primarily by the markets
A new bio-based product can be sold only if there is a strong market demand for it. Furthermore the survey results show that a new bio-based product has to have improved functionalities compared to its fossil counterpart, which is why innovation and new functionalities has been ranked high on the priority list of key drivers. Sustainability, low environmental impact, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the share of non-fossil carbon atoms in the product were also identified as important drivers when developing a new product. Production costs, feedstock availability and legislation, although ranking lower on the priority list of key drivers, are still important considerations for the industry when introducing a new product.
Improvement in resource efficiency and new functionalities are the main criteria for which bio-based products to produce
Interviewees rated a set of predefined criteria that might play an important role when determining which new bio-based product to produce. The criteria were grouped in different impact categories such as environmental, societal, economic, and biomass availability.
Interview partners rated most of the given criteria of all categories as important or very important. The criteria considered most important are an improvement in resource efficiency and new functionalities of bio-based products.
Highly functionalized chemicals are rated as most promising
Survey results show that the trend is towards more highly functionalized chemicals, specialty chemicals and plastic monomers. This trend was also confirmed in the general assessment what product application groups are promising the largest growth for bio-based products. Here too, interviewees see great opportunities for platform chemicals, fine chemicals and plastics.
Assessment of bio-based sectors to 2030
Stakeholders estimate that in the next term to 2030 the highest growth of bio-based chemicals will be in the sector of plastics, surfactants, fine and functional but also chemicals for cosmetics. Other sectors where notable growth of bio-based products and chemicals is expected are: man-made fibres, adhesives and agrochemicals.
Invitation to the next industry workshop
Whether you are an industrialist, a NGO, a government policy maker or another stakeholder, your engagement is important to us. With your knowledge and contribution, it is possible to create a strong roadmap with a high impact and containing clear, realistic goals.
Join us on the journey to a more bio-based chemical industry and participate in our stakeholder workshops and webinars. Our next stakeholder workshop is scheduled to be held on 19 June 2018 afternoon in Brussels. See here the full agenda of the workshop. The workshop is free of charge.
Through your participation in our stakeholder dialogue process you get the opportunity to help shape the development process and help steer the content of the roadmap.
Make a reservation for this date and contact us at [email protected]
What you can expect from the next newsletter
In the next newsletter we would like to share with you the findings from our latest work on public acceptance.
In November 2017 we issued our report D2.2 Public perception of bio-based products, which, based on a literature survey, identified barriers for further market development and how to approach them.
To broaden our initial understanding we validated our findings by interviewing selected key authors in early 2018. We also interviewed a range of societal stakeholders (NGOs as well as policy makers), which yielded relevant additional insights on issues and opportunities and helped fine-tuning approaches. The results and findings will be reported about in the forthcoming report D2.3. Highlights will be published in the May 2018 newsletter edition.
Join the network
We would like to invite you to join us on the journey to a more bio-based chemical industry. The roadmap should contain clear, realistic goals. Your knowledge and experience is necessary to create a market relevant roadmap with a high impact. Therefore, we will conduct workshops and webinars to involve you as stakeholder.
Your opinion is of utmost importance to us. Through your participation, you get the opportunity to help shape the development process and to find your opinion later in the roadmap.
Introduction of the RoadToBio Team
The consortium of this two-year project, which started in May 2017, consists of four members:
- DECHEMA Gesellschaft für Chemische Technik und Biotechnologie e.V.,
- BTG Biomass Technology Group BV,
- E4tech (UK) Ltd.,
- nova-Institut für politische und ökologische Innovation GmbH.
They bring in complementary expertise in relevant fields of the bioeconomy and chemical industry, covering in depth all aspects that need to be included in the roadmap.
This project has received funding from the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 745623.