The European Commission’s Industrial Technologies 2010 conference and Exhibition on September 7-9 proved to be a valuable platform for SusChem to engage with policy-makers and potential collaborative partners.
Speaking on the last day of the three-day event at Brussels’s Tour & Taxis site, SusChem coordinator and Cefic Innovation Manager Ger Spork said: “SusChem had a very strong presence in the conference and exhibition and our message was clear - SusChem is ready and able to take an active role in shaping and contributing to programmes under the Commission’s Europe 2020 initiative.”
The Europe 2020 initiative is looking to drive the EU economy towards smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. In his presentation to the conference Ger (right) had outlined the SusChem approach which combines definition of strategic research needs, deployment of large demonstration or proof of concept projects, and implementation.
“This final implementation stage involves the addressing of non-technical and non-financial challenges to the market implementation of sustainable innovations,” explains Ger. “To successfully get to rapid market implementation must, in our view, require a collaborative public-private approach that includes input from the full value chain. This is clearly an enhanced collaborative dimension that SusChem is ready to drive with strong support from the chemical industry.”
“With respect to Europe 2020, SusChem’s four focus areas are ‘Quality of Life’, clean environment and water, low carbon society, and economic prosperity,” he continues. “These fit well with some of the potential Innovation Partnerships described by the Commission such as critical raw materials, water efficient Europe, and low carbon cities.”
“SusChem has already outlined four of its own proposals for public-private partnerships to the Commission in areas that are essential to the Europe 2020 strategy and where the chemical community is ready to take a lead,” concludes Ger. “The four areas are sustainable urban construction, sustainable individual mobility in large cities, resource efficiency in processing, and energy for a low carbon society; all designed as modular concepts to enable effective alignment with priority policy initiatives.”
SusChem board member Klaus Sommer (below) presented on the F3 factory at the conference. He described the SusChem-inspired project as a major coordinated effort between industry and academia to boost the competitiveness of chemical and pharmaceutical manufacturing in Europe. This four year, 25 partner project provides a critical mass involving contributions along the value chain to meet the scale of the technical challenge. And it is deploying interdisciplinary teams addressing complex issues to create and demonstrate new process concepts.
He summarised the F3 project as a collaboration that enables all its partners to get farther and faster, together.
Klaus also stressed that many aspects around Sustainable Chemistry can integrate very well with up- and downstream partner industries and other process industries. The chemistry industry is a key component in very many value chains.
Commenting on the conference, Klaus said: “What I find important is that this interaction with the Commission is really strong. That we feel that we understand what the plans of the Commission are, but the Commission also hears the input that people from different corners of the industry give to the Commission.”
SusChem Board member Martina Bianchini also gave a short presentation on SusChem as part of her chairperson and moderator role for the conference session ‘Towards Environmentally Sustainable Production’.
As usual the SusChem stand (see below) with its interactive Smart Energy Home and F3 exhibits was also a very popular part of the exhibition area with SusChem representatives having to field a large number of queries over the three days.
For more information on the Industrial Technologies 2010 Conference, please visit the conference website.
All photos copyright ©2010 Mark Florquin