Chemicals giant commits to zero-deforestation, using fewer resources

Swiss chemicals company Clariant has announced a series of new sustainability pledges, including a zero-deforestation policy and the removal of heavy-metal-based pigments from certain processes.

The group, which has an annual turnover of around $8bn, said the new commitments would secure the company’s long-term viability.

“Only with specialty chemistry will we find new ways into a sustainable future,” said CEO Hariolf Kottmann.

“We must create long-term value. And we can only achieve this through innovative strength and strict sustainable practices. It is the only way to establish a leading position in our businesses.”

The new targets are:

  • The creation of a zero-deforestation policy with focus on traceability across the value chain and obtaining Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) supply chain certification.
  • The proactive encouragement of value chain collaboration with customers, suppliers and other third parties.
  • The replacement of heavy-metal based pigments in certain processes ‘in the near future’.
  • The company already screens 84% of its products on a sustainability criteria. 

Last year, Clariant joined the ‘Together for Sustainability‘ initiative that aims to improve sustainability practices within the supply chains of the chemical industry. AkzoNobel, BASF, Bayer, Evonik Industries, and Henkel are also members.

Today’s announcement by Clariant is reflective of an increasingly sustainability-conscious industry. Earlier this year, Dow Chemical unveiled its ambitious ‘seven goals for 2025’ programme which includes commitments to the circular economy and putting a monetary value on nature.

AkzoNobel’s UK business also recently achieved the prestigious Carbon Trust triple standard, while German firm Henkel claims it is on track to treble its resource efficiency by 2030.

Brad Allen

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