- Around 3% of raw materials purchased worldwide in 2012 were from renewable resources
- Method being developed to produce succinic acid from renewable raw materials
- BASF aims to use palm and palm kernel oil exclusively from certified sustainable cultivation by 2015
The conservation of resources along the value chain is one of our fundamental principles. We make an important contribution with our Verbund concept, our innovative products and the use of renewables. In the search for alternative raw materials, we rely on solutions that contribute to sustainability.
Stations along the value chain
The Verbund system is an important component of our resource efficiency concept: The by-products of one plant often serve as feedstock elsewhere, thus helping us to use raw materials more efficiently. Some of our most important raw materials are naphtha, natural gas, methanol, ammonia and benzene. We investigate the use of renewable resources in our Verbund system and are involved in the responsible cultivation and utilization of renewables in numerous projects along the value chain.
In 2012, around 3% of the raw materials we purchased worldwide were from renewable resources. BASF is intensifying research and development activities for products and production processes based on renewable raw materials. For example, with our partner, Purac, we are developing a method for the production of succinic acid using renewable resources, making succinic acid an economical and ecological alternative to petrochemical raw materials for our customers.
In 2012, we invested in the technology company Renmatix, which is working on producing industrial sugar from wood-based biomass. With this investment, we aim to further promote the use of renewable resources. Furthermore, we signed a contract with Cargill and Novozymes on the joint development of technologies to produce acrylic acid from renewable resources. One of the main applications of bio-based acrylic acid is in the production of superabsorbents for the hygiene industry.
Together with Cargill and the German governmental agency for international cooperation, we continued our project in 2012 for the economical, environmentally friendly and socially responsible production of coconut oil in the Philippines. Our goal is to develop and implement sustainability standards for the certification and production of this oil. As a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), BASF is involved in projects which include the conservation of biodiversity in the cultivation of palm oil. By 2015, we aim to use palm and palm kernel oil only from agriculture certified according to sustainability criteria.
Mineral raw materials
In 2012, we once again performed an analysis to find out if we use “conflict minerals.” To our current knowledge, this is not the case. Our suppliers have confirmed to us that they do not source their minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo or its neighboring countries. We investigate the origins of the minerals we use and reserve the right to conduct an external audit and, if necessary, terminate our business relationship with that supplier. Through a standardized questionnaire, new suppliers must disclose to us in advance if their products contain conflict minerals.
In 2012, we investigated our sites around the world to discover which are located near internationally protected areas: 2% of our production sites (excluding oil and gas) border directly on a Ramsar Site, and none of our production sites borders on a UNESCO protected area. We have not determined any effects of our activities on biodiversity in these areas in 2012.
Together with cooperation partners, we develop measures that enable the coexistence of biological diversity and modern agriculture. We promote the protection of biodiversity in local initiatives; for example, at our site in Guaratinguetá, Brazil, we are involved in the renaturation of a river landscape.