The International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre (ISC3) celebrated its successful first year with international guests at its headquarters in Bonn.
Experts and partners from all over the world highlighted the important role of the new, independent international centre for the global breakthrough of sustainable chemistry. With its transformative agenda the ISC3 contributes to achieving the Global Sustainable Development Goals by fostering innovation and enabling new sustainable business models in the chemicals sector. “Sustainable chemistry is a holistic framework addressing the whole life-cycle of chemical substances, materials, processes, and products while also considering the social impact of chemistry and chemicals.” Friedrich Barth, Managing Director of the ISC3, highlighted the role and achievements of the new independent institution: “Looking back at the successful first year of this new institution we are proud to present important steps to promote sustainable chemistry as a game-changing concept. We have built up strong international partnerships and made a showcase for sustainable innovations developed by young entrepreneurs from all over the world.”
The German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), Ms. Svenja Schulze, visited the ISC3 Headquarters in Bonn on this special occasion. In her greetings the minister highlighted the role of sustainable chemistry as a new way to address the manifold challenges arising from the increasing use of chemicals in our modern daily life. In representing the founding organisations of the ISC3 the minister was joined by Ms. Jutta Klasen, Head of the Chemicals Management Department at the German Environment Agency (UBA). Ms Klasen underpinned the need for sustainable innovation in many areas which are crucial for achieving the SDGs. Furthermore, Ms Tanja Gönner, Chair of the Management Board of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), joined the distinguished speakers. Ms Gönner draw attention to the role of the GIZ in supporting the successful implementation of the ISC3 as a new international organisation.
The relevance of sustainable chemistry as a new transformative concept was highlighted in a panel discussion, which brought together the different perspectives from science, industry, civil society and politics on the emerging concept. Sascha Gabizon, Executive Director of the international network WECF - Women Engage for a Common Future, Pierre Barthélemy, Executive Director of the Innovation Programme at the European Chemical Industry Council (cefic), Thomas Jakl, Head of the Chemical Policy and Biocides Department at the Austrian Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism and Klaus Kümmerer, Director of the Institute for Sustainable and Environmental Chemistry at Leuphana University and Director of the ISC3 Research & Education Hub, highlighted the challenges of sustainable chemistry innovation as well as the opportunities of the emerging concept. The discussants underpinned the need for further dialogue on the manifold topics related to sustainable chemistry. In their concluding remarks, the panellists called for an active role of the ISC3 in connecting stakeholders worldwide, highlighting important trends in the interconnected fields of sustainability and chemistry as well as fostering the role of start-ups and SMEs in bringing new, sustainable products and services to the markets.
Keeping in mind the encouraging remarks and the achievement of its first year, the ISC3 is looking forward to many successful years to come.