BASF is the first chemical company to become a member of The Sustainability Consortium, an independent organization of diverse global participants that work collaboratively to build a scientific foundation that drives innovation to improve consumer product sustainability. The company joins other retailers and consumer product manufacturers that have become members of the Consortium and its product life cycle mission, including social and environmental considerations.
“At BASF, we are committed to leading industry toward greater sustainability, transparency and responsible interaction with both the environment and society,” said Kurt Bock, CEO, BASF Corporation. “The mission of The Sustainability Consortium aligns well with that commitment -- we are pleased to join a coalition of companies and individuals similarly dedicated to the advancement of sustainable consumer products and supply networks.”
The Sustainability Consortium is a part of the Global Institute of Sustainability at Arizona State University (ASU); and the Applied Sustainability Center at the University of Arkansas.
Co-administered by Arizona State University and the University of Arkansas, the Consortium will research and publish findings on the life cycle impacts of various product categories. Together, the Consortium will provide decision and policymakers with a broader understanding of how new and innovative organizational strategies and technologies can assist in meeting various environmental, economic and social objectives.
In keeping with its long-standing strategic commitment to sustainable development, BASF developed its Eco-Efficiency Analysis in 1996. This life-cycle approach to quantifying the sustainability of products, processes or whole system solutions accounts for both economic and environmental impact. Since the introduction of this tool, BASF has performed more than 400 comprehensive analyses for its business units, external partners and customers. NSF International validated BASF’s Eco-Efficiency Analysis methodology in 2009 and it has also been certified by the German Association for Technical Inspection (TÜV Berlin).
The Consortium was established as a means to tackle the challenge of sustainability in the face of unprecedented growth. As consumers become more sophisticated about their purchasing decisions, and as natural resources become more limited, the Consortium is dedicated to driving innovation so that consumers are empowered to consume in a more sustainable way.
“We are pleased to welcome BASF into the Sustainability Consortium, and we look forward to a fruitful and productive partnership ahead,” said Dr. Jay S. Golden, co-director of the Sustainability Consortium. “BASF will contribute an experienced team of experts collectively focused on a scientific approach to sustainable consumption. Together we will spur a new generation of products and supply networks that address environmental, social and economic imperatives.”
In 2008, a lifecycle analysis was conducted on BASF products to assess related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and savings– from sourcing of raw materials to manufacture to product disposal. This pioneering carbon footprint study, which was validated by the Eco-Institute in Freiburg, Germany, concluded that the net reduction of GHG emissions resulting from the use of BASF’s products outweighed emissions related to production, transport and disposal by a factor of 3:1. The study was updated in October 2009 and produced similar results. Moving forward, BASF will strive to maintain or improve this ratio.