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Product Carbon Footprints: Chemical industry agrees on standard

The chemical industry has agreed on a global standard for calculating its product carbon footprints (PCFs).

37 companies in the chemical industry have agreed on a uniform global PCFs standard as part of the Together for Sustainability (TfS) initiative. Specific calculation instructions for emissions from raw material extraction to the factory gate, which are to be applicable to a large number of chemical products, have been published by the initiative in a guideline. According to the initiators, the standard specifies, for example, how the use of grid electricity or renewable energy is to be assessed. Emissions from purchased goods have been difficult to measure in the past due to the complexity of chemical production, and the new guide is intended to solve this problem. The first edition is said to focuse on setting specifications for supplier calculations. Four chapters of reporting principles and guidance on further calculations are to be published in November. Ultimately, the new guide should also help end users make better, more sustainable decisions. A common approach to calculating their product carbon footprints has been lacking in the chemical industry until now, says Prof. Dr. Peter Saling, Director Sustainability Methods at BASF. The chemical company had made its own digital solution for calculating carbon footprints available to the market as a software license to drive standardization.


  • Kunststoff Information (Oct. 17, 2022)
  • Photo: Fotolia

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