Safe Chemistry

ACC Members Contributions to Safe Chemistry

Clariant Innovates Highly Effective, Low-Carbon Footprint Surfactants for Personal Care and Cleaning Products

Sustainability Challenge:

Climate conscious companies are seeking to reduce the carbon footprint of the raw materials they use and the processes in their value chain.

Chemistry Solution:

Clariant has developed a broad range of sugar-based surfactants that perform as well as existing solutions, with lower emissions profiles.

Sustainability Benefit:

Low-carbon glucamides surfactants generally result in a smaller carbon footprint from cradle to gate by requiring fewer processing steps than existing alternatives.

Many consumers are seeking personal care and home cleaning products with milder product formulations that can also offer powerful foaming and cleaning properties.

At the same time, climate-conscious companies are working to cut emissions and to switch to green energy in their own productions, as well as monitoring the carbon footprint of raw materials and processes in their value chain.

To address some consumers desire for more natural and mild products with effective cleaning properties, Clariant’s low-carbon glucamides from its GlucoTain® and GlucoPure® product lines are a broad range of sugar-based surfactants for use in personal care and home care cleaning product formulations that offer mildness and powerful foaming and cleaning in personal and home care formulations as well as enhanced emissions profiles.

Clariant’s glucamides are readily biodegradable products with up to 96 percent Renewable Carbon Index, high biomass content and a good ecotox profile.  The products also do not require a chronic aquatic toxicity label or irritant label according to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). Clariant’s glucamides are also COSMOS-, Nordic Swan-, and Halal-certified.

Clariant’s low-carbon glucamidesClariant undertook a cradle-to-gate carbon footprint analysis to compare its glucamide products to existing alternatives and found that its glucamides emit as much as 1 to 5 kilograms of CO2 equivalent less carbon dioxide, per kilogram of active content, than other widely used surfactant chemicals. Their lower emissions can support their customers’ goals to reduce their own emissions.

This smaller carbon footprint is attributable to the feedstocks used to develop the product and that fewer processing steps are needed in the ingredient’s manufacture. By using these glucamides, Clariant’s customers need fewer components such as thickeners and conditioning agents in their formulations compared other surfactants. In fact, replacing 1,000 tons traditional surfactant chemicals with GlucoTain surfactant can potentially save emissions equivalent to up to 1,000 cars driven over a year.

With these glucamides, Clariant is contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals of responsible consumption and production regarding sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources, and increasing awareness and education on climate change mitigation, adaptation and impact reduction.

Chemours EVOLVE 2030 Provides a Science-Based, Data-Driven Approach to Evaluate Product Sustainability Impacts

Sustainability Challenge:

Companies are seeking ways to improve, enhance and evaluate their sustainability performance.

Chemistry Solution:

Chemours developed the EVOLVE 2030 methodology to evaluate its product portfolio and new product development pipeline using a data-driven, science-based approach.

Sustainability Benefit:

The EVOLVE 2030 methodology is helping Chemours meet its goal that 50 percent or more of its products make a specific contribution to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Companies are looking for ways that they can evaluate their products and operations to enhance safety and sustainability in a way that is credible, measureable and able to be validated by external stakeholders.

To address this, Chemours developed its comprehensive EVOLVE 2030 methodology to evaluate the company’s portfolio of new and existing products, to identify their specific contributions to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), as well as their net impact on society and the environment.

EVOLVE 2030 PAC Evaluation ProcessEVOLVE 2030 is aligned with the World Business Council’s Portfolio Sustainability Assessment method, which uses a Product-Application Combination (PAC) assessment methodology that considers both the product itself and its use-phase application. The methodology uses a data-driven, science-based approach, relying on specific criteria to evaluate and score the lifecycle impacts of products in their applications, based on factors such as greenhouse gas (GHG) and fluorinated organic chemical (FOC) emissions intensities, landfill waste intensities, hazards, exposures, risks to human health and the environment, and climate impacts.

Each PAC is evaluated for its contribution to the UN SDG targets and indicators, and measured in accordance with its significance, or the relative role the product plays in helping to meet the SDG; and magnitude, or the relative importance of the solution for achieving the SDG.

The PAC evaluation process consists of three stages: Data Collection & Validation, Analysis & Scoring, and Align & Summarize:

The relevant business and functional experts are involved in the process, providing transparency and understanding of underlying factors affecting sustainability.  Chemours is working to meet the goal that 50 percent or more of its revenue comes from offerings that make a specific contribution to the UN SDGs.

With a focus on validation, reproducibility and transparency, Chemours obtained third-party assurance on the EVOLVE 2030 methodology from Lloyds Register Quality Assurance (LRQA) in fall 2019. Chemours has shared the EVOLVE 2030 methodology publicly and engaged in dialogue with interested stakeholders to enable its continual improvement and has received interest from national governments, inter-governmental organizations, customers and value chain stakeholders on how the methodology may be adapted by others and mainstreamed. 

Afton Initiative Enhances Transparency for Product Hazard Communications

Sustainability Challenge:

Manufacturers that use chemical products often need comprehensive information on hazards and risks so that they can use chemicals safely.

Chemistry Solution:

Afton Chemical undertook a comprehensive review of hazard data for its products to enhance transparency for product safety information.

Sustainability Benefit:

By transparently providing hazard information and environmental, health and safety data for the products it manufactures, Afton’s customers can more fully assess risks and understand how to use its products safely.

Afton Chemical Corporation develops petroleum additives, including engine oil, fuel and lubricant additives that have led to advancements in fuel economy, engine cleanliness and emissions reduction.

Beginning in 2016, Afton launched a three-year initiative to overhaul its hazard communication data and associated databases for all of the products it manufactures, with a goal of providing customers, emergency responders, employees and other stakeholders access to current, robust product safety information on its products.

Drum-Afton Chemical

Afton undertook an extensive review of the classification, toxicology, ecotoxicology and regulatory information used to support product hazard classifications. The initiative had several goals, among the most important being data integrity and transparency of information on hazard communication documents, including Safety Data Sheets (SDS) and product labels. Additionally, this project improved process efficiency, reduced SDS cycle time, and significantly reduced SDS error rate.

Afton reviewed environmental, health and safety (EHS) information on more than 1,000 chemical substances to identify potential data gaps for any relevant missing hazard information. As part of this review, Afton assessed current claims of confidentiality, or CBI, for its chemical substances, in order to claim CBI for only business-critical chemicals. This review resulted in the release of CBI claims for a large number of chemicals. The exact chemical identity now appears on the SDS so that there is a clear, transparent connection between the hazard information and chemicals present in Afton’s products.

The majority of Afton’s products are formulated into the customer’s finished products. Afton has used direct feedback from its largest global customers to assess the benefits of this initiative. Feedback from customers has been positive.

FMC’s Product Assessment Tool Provides a Comprehensive, Transparent Way to Evaluate Product Sustainability

Sustainability Challenge:

A growing global population depends on safe and environmentally sustainable products to increase the world food supply and food security.

Chemistry Solution:

FMC’s Product Stewardship and Sustainability Assessment Tool enables the company to evaluate products throughout their life cycle with a focus on enhancing sustainability and reducing its environmental footprint.

Sustainability Benefit:

By continually evaluating ingredients and sharing information, FMC is enhancing the safe and sustainable use of agricultural products.

With the global population expected to reach nearly 10 billion by 2050, it is vital to develop tools and strategies to safely feed people all around the world. FMC develops agricultural products used to control pests such as insects, weeds, bacteria, mold and fungi in global food production.

“Tractor”

In order to meet the needs of growers for pest control options that are safe and sustainable, FMC developed its Product Stewardship and Sustainability Assessment Tool (PSSA) to assess and determine the sustainability of its active ingredients and products, from initial concept through each stage of development.

The PSSA compares an active ingredient or formulated product to a benchmark active ingredient or product to determine a “sustainability matrix value,” based on stewardship and sustainability questions that consider the overall lifecycle of the product, including product hazards and environmental and human exposure.

Having committed 80 percent of its research and development budget to developing sustainable products by 2020, FMC uses this tool as part of its R&D process for new active ingredients, as well as to evaluate products currently on the market. This assessment, along with other stewardship processes and tools, helps ensure the introduction and continued use of environmentally sustainable agricultural solutions.

Furthermore, FMC evaluates the effectiveness of the PSSA annually to make sure the questions are clear, relevant and effective and that the benchmark of active ingredients and formulated products used for comparison are still relevant, with the goal of continually improving crop protection products in terms of worker/applicator safety, crop yields, process chemistry and environmental footprint.

In 2017, FMC completed a full analysis of its product portfolio to determine which ones may be classified as Highly Hazardous Pesticides (HHPs), based on the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization criteria. After results indicated four active ingredients and several inert ingredients would be classified as HHPs, FMC determined it will phase out these active ingredients as it develops newer chemistries.

The PSSA incorporates local use risk assessments to evaluate if label instructions and guidance on use of personal protective equipment are adequate to mitigate risk from products containing these active ingredients. Further, FMC is undertaking an inert ingredient replacement program to help determine that no inert ingredients classified as HHPs will be used in future product formulations and has signed CropLife International’s declaration to not develop any future HHPs.

BASF’s Approach for Assessing Safety of Chemical Products

Sustainability Challenge:

Consumers want to know that chemical ingredients in the products they use are safe.

Chemistry Solution:

BASF applies a comprehensive approach to assess the safety and overall sustainability of the more than 60,000 chemistry products it manufactures.

Sustainability Benefit:

By undertaking a thorough sustainability and safety assessment for all of its products, BASF can accelerate development of sustainable products and technologies.

Consumers and other stakeholders are increasingly seeking detailed safety and sustainability information about chemical ingredients in the products they use every day.

To meet this demand, BASF applies its Product Stewardship Worldwide efforts and “ Sustainable Solution Steering” methodology to assess the safety and sustainability of all of its products, based on their specific applications.

“BASF”

BASF undertakes a transparent, consistent sustainability performance evaluation of the more than 60,000 products in its portfolio, to holistically evaluate the environmental, economic and social aspects of those products over their entire lifecycle. Company researchers and scientists review the safety of BASF products, from research and development, through production, customers’ use, all the way through end of life recycling, recovery or disposal.

This safety assessment includes an evaluation of the intended use of the substance and the extent to which people come into contact with a chemical ingredient in a product, for how long and in what amount. BASF has set a public target to review the safety assessments of all of the products sold worldwide in volumes great than one ton by 2020.

BASF provides safety information about the products it manufactures around the globe, through a comprehensive global product database that includes detailed safety data sheets for all of the products the company manufactures. BASF also maintains an extensive internal expert network to support the safe handling and use of their products along the supply chain.

Responsible Care® Product Safety Code: A Commitment to Chemical Safety

Sustainability Challenge:

Consumers have questions about the safety of chemicals in the products they use every day.

Chemistry Solution:

Chemists at ACC member companies evaluate chemical products for safety and environmental impacts, and adjust uses and formulations based on the latest scientific findings.

Sustainability Benefit:

Consumers can have greater confidence in the products they use each day.

While more than a dozen federal laws regulate the safe use of chemicals, Responsible Care® is the chemical industry’s commitment to go above and beyond these requirements, to use and manage chemical materials safely and responsibly.

As an industry, we are responsible for the health and environmental impacts of our chemical products. We proactively work with customers and suppliers to understand how they use our products, in order to protect workers, consumers and the environment.

The Responsible Care® Product Safety Code is a comprehensive set of practices that all ACC members must follow to safely manage the products they manufacture.

To meet this commitment, ACC member companies must:

  • Assess the public health and environmental impacts of chemical products and how consumers will use them.
  • Provide plain-language information about chemicals so consumers can make informed decisions about the products they purchase.
  • Identify and evaluate new information, such as if a chemical is used in a new application, or by a new customer, or in a larger than typical amount.
  • Adjust and modify chemical formulations based on the latest scientific findings to address chemical product safety, environmental or efficacy issues that may arise.
  • Screen prospective customers for their ability to properly store, process and use chemicals.
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