Chemical Building Blocks –What do we need to do to build sustainable foundations for the biobased chemicals industry in Europe?

1st October 2014 at Reims Congress Centre, Reims, France.

Background

Chemical building blocks provide routes to a wide range of different products and chemicals and, in turn, an astonishing range of different downstream uses. Industrial biotechnology offers the potential for developing biobased chemical building blocks that can have new or improved functionalities compared to those which can be produced from fossil fuels or traditional chemical routes. Despite this potential, significant hurdles to the production of biobased chemical building blocks using IB processes exist in the EU.

These include:

  • Securing a large enough supply of feedstock and at a price which is economically attractive compared to elsewhere in the world.
  • Uncertain definitions, for example waste, hinder the exploitation of novel and cheap waste streams.
  • Lack of political support for chemical building blocks production, resulting in a lack of confidence from investors and users.
  • Uncertainty surrounding the potential impact of the increasing appetite for shale gas.

This workshop aims to identify workable solutions to the major hurdles and concerns hampering the development of the biobased chemicals sector in the EU.  It will consider, amongst other issues:

  • Is it feasible or desirable to develop an internationally harmonised framework to allow international trade in biobased chemical building blocks?
  • Whether the EU should focus on a broad chemical building block portfolio or should it reap the benefits from its strong R&D base and the current developments in favour of shale gas to develop a competitive advantage in biomass derived aromatics and C3/C4 chemicals?
  • How do we improve cost-competitiveness of EU chemical building blocks production?
  • Should we introduce a specific mandate for bio-based chemicals in the EU or would tax incentives or infrastructure grants be more effective?

 

Workshop Information:

The objectives of the workshop are to:

  • Prioritise the technological, non-technological and market hurdles affecting the use of IB in chemical building block production
  • Identify novel solutions to the most important hurdles.
  • Bring together IB end users with technology providers, innovation agencies and decision makers to stimulate discussion and help develop connections.

Input from market, policy and technological experts within the area of chemical building blocks is crucial to allow us to develop recommendations which best answer the needs of industry.

The workshop is taking place as part of the European Forum for Industrial Biotechnology and the Biobased Economy (EFIB)  organised by EuropaBio and Smithers Rapra, in association with IAR. EFIB is an annual event, to which 800 stakeholders in the biobased economy from across policy, industry and research are expected to attend. 

Workshop attendees are eligible for 15% off the admission fee for the EFIB 2014 conference but need to register for the workshop before registering for EFIB 2014 in order to receive the discount. You will be entitled to spend 2 full days at EFIB, to make the most of this great opportunity to learn more about the potential of industrial biotechnology and, in addition to this Chemical Building Blocks workshop, you can take part in the official opening and closing plenaries, discover new innovations both in the innovation track and on the exhibition floor, and also join in the active 1-to-1 partnering meetings. Visit www.efibforum.com for more information and to register now. 

Introducing the BIO-TIC project….

BIO-TIC is a three year project, funded by the European Commission, aiming to identify the hurdles to Industrial Biotechnology and to develop solutions to overcome them, thereby unlocking the massive potential for this key technology in Europe.

The project focuses on five product groups which have significant potential for Europe and which have the potential to introduce cross cutting technology ideas. These product groups are

  • Biobased chemical building blocks
  • Bioplastics
  • Biosurfactants
  • Advanced biofuels
  • CO2 based chemicals

Roadmaps for developing the IB sector in Europe, with a special focus on the opportunities above, will be delivered by summer 2015. We are developing three in depth bio-roadmaps focussing on market potential, R&D priorities and non-technological (regulatory and policy) hurdles to IB innovation. The market roadmap will provide market projections to 2030. The technological roadmap will focus on setting R&D priorities and identifying needs for pilot and demonstration activities and the non-technological issues roadmap will identify the regulatory and non-technological hurdles that may inhibit IB innovation from new markets.

BIO-TIC is your gateway to Industrial Biotechnology

For more information have a look at our website or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn 

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