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BioAmber CCO Moderates Panel at 8th European Bioplastics Conference

Babette Pettersen led the panel on sustainability metrics; concluding that work still needs to be done on social and economic aspects of the sustainability equation

December 12, 2013
Panelists included the WWF, The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials, THEMA1, Ecofys, IFEU, ITENE Packaging, Transport & Logistics Research Centre, as well as Dr. Matthias Finkbeiner from the Technical University of Berlin.

Babette Moderates Panel at 8th European Bioplastics Conference in Berlin - December 11, 2013

The panel concluded that although a lot of work has been done to define clear, representative sustainability metrics,  and that there are a limited range of meaningful, measurable indicators now available to assess the sustainability of bioplastics, built on LCA, there is still lack of agreement on the additional metrics required, such as indirect land use (iLUC). It was agreed that the European Bioplastics Association was the best qualified to lead the move to reach agreement on comprehensive metrics and standardisation. 

Most of the work done to date is on the environmental side of the sustainability equation; much more work needs to be done on the social and economic aspects.  Guido Axmann, of THEMA1 presented information about consumer trial in the Personal & Home Care market, where an  iPhone App enabled  consumers to determine the ingredients of a particular product and  to confirm its sustainability. This provided a flavor of the potential 'power' that consumers may have to drive the move to standardisation faster than is happening today, and gave a very different perspective to the more academic/scientific perspective that is typically the focus.  In conclusion, the quest for a clear set of international standards, is still on; "it is a marathon; not a sprint," and with the new IT available, consumers may be playing a much larger role in defining sustainability metrics, than was previously considered/possible. It was agreed that up-front consumer involvement  would definitely fast-track the effort to define a clear set of sustainability metrics for the bioplastics industry, but that we should strive to keep a balance between consumer interests and scientific rigour. An interesting discussion, including active audience participation.
 
Wladimir Moraes, Opportunity Development Manager and Babette Pettersen, Chief Commercial Officer, BioAmber at 8th European Bioplastics Conference in Berlin, December 11, 20313
Wladimir Moraes, Opportunity Development Manager and Babette Pettersen, Chief Commercial Officer, BioAmber
at 8th European Bioplastics Conference in Berlin, December 11, 2013

 
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