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Chemical Producers’ Sustainability Strategies on the Rise

GenomaticaEighty-one percent of mainstream chemical producers say it’s very or moderately important to be a front runner in sustainable chemicals, according to a survey by Genomatica and ICIS.

In addition, respondents said they viewed BASF, DuPont, Dow, Bayer and Genomatica as the leaders in sustainable technology.

The survey drew 958 responses worldwide, with 53 percent of respondents at the level of vice president, general manager or above.

When asked whether their company has a sustainability strategy/policy in place, 69 percent responded that they either have one in place or are currently developing one, and 67 percent described their company’s top business priority in sustainability as either promoting or marketing sustainable products, taking an active lead on sustainability issues, or engaging customers on a business level.

In the area of renewable feedstocks among producers, 35 percent said they are investing in research and development in renewable feedstocks, and 31 percent said they have a strategic commitment to their use.

Regarding economics, 43 percent of producers said there is long-term economic advantage to renewable feedstocks, and 51 percent said they should reduce exposure to the petroleum market.

The survey also showed there is increasing interest in sustainable chemicals and products, with 72 percent of producers now offering more sustainable versions of chemicals or planning to offer them within two years.

In addition, producers said that compared to one year ago, 80 percent of their customers are showing the same or higher interest in sustainable chemicals, and 75 percent of chemical users either offer products made with more sustainable chemicals or expect to do so within two years.

The responses echo findings of a similar survey released by Genomatica last year.

A report by Frost & Sullivan last year predicted chemicals that support and promote clean and sustainable energy technologies and energy efficiency would be a growth area in 2014 and beyond.

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