The circular economy and digitalisation will be the two most important trends employed by Germany’s chemical industry as it moves towards 2030. These trends, according to the German Chemical Industry Association, will “fundamentally alter the way” the industry is working.

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Photo by Ivan Bandura on Unsplash

Chemicals used in products such as plastics and fertilisers, are scrutinised for their negative impact on the environment and human health. Surprisingly, chemicals used for acids and lubricants receive much less attention, yet when managed improperly, the detrimental effects of these processes are no better.

Most industrial sectors use chemicals at some stage in their processes, from automotive to life sciences, and consumer products to oil and gas. In most cases, chemical efficiency can be startlingly low, and the chemical yield — the percentage of a chemical quantity that is consumed or converted during a chemical reaction — is often less than 50%. This means that half of the chemical becomes waste without once being used. In some industrial processes, chemical yield can be as low as 5%. …


Rémy Le Moigne

Managing Director at Gate C, a consulting firm helping businesses to capture the value of the circular economy

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