International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre celebrates its first anniversary

The international centre promotes the development of sustainable chemistry in the interests of people, the environment and economic development.

Over 90% of all products that we use are made using chemical substances and processes. The German Federal Environment Ministry and Federal Environment Agency established the International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre (ISC3) around one year ago with the goal of promoting sustainable chemistry around the globe. The centre, which is under the coordination of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, has already met with international recognition in its first year. With a festive event in Bonn Federal Environment Minister Svenja Schulz and Chair of the GIZ Tanja Gönner celebrated together with guests invited from the fields of politics, business, science and research, and civil society  the centre’s successful start and considered the future tasks and goals of ISC3.

The objective of the independent, international institution is to promote sustainable chemistry worldwide, with a view to reducing the detrimental effects that using chemicals has on people and the environment in future. To this end, the centre cooperates closely with representatives from the fields of business, politics, science and research to specifically promote innovation and new, future-focused business models in chemistry. The centre’s motto is: ‘We transform chemistry’.

Tanja Gönner, Chair of the GIZ Management Board, considers the founding of ISC3 to be a special task for GIZ: ‘The Collaborative Centre’s approach involves much more than simply managing chemicals. It also promotes innovative and sustainable solutions. GIZ has assumed dual responsibility for establishing this new institution and also promoting sustainable chemistry as a new, future-focused approach on the international agenda.’

Experts forecast that the use of chemicals worldwide will increase and that sales in the chemical sector will nearly double by 2030 compared to the figure in 2015. Chemicals are increasingly being produced and processed in non-OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries such as India, Indonesia, Viet Nam and the Philippines. The country with the largest chemical industry today is China.

Future-focused chemistry has the potential to transform entire supply chains into a circular economy. This will avoid waste and hazardous chemicals, while at the same time optimising the use of natural resources.

ISC3 is specifically integrating other topics and sectors into its work to develop solutions for many of the current global challenges, such as for climate protection, drinking water, air pollution and transportation.

All photos: Bernd Ahrens, Ahrens Photography

Svenja Schulze (German Federal Environment Minister) in front of the entrance to ISC3. Photo: Bernd Ahrens, Ahrens Photography

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