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Espaço ECO offers Guidance to Private Enterprises in realizing Eco-efficiency Analyses

Published on 2005-06-27. Author : SpecialChem

The Espaço ECO foundation - Latin America's first center for applied eco-efficiency, which is located at BASF's site in São Bernardo do Campo, Brazil, - was officially inaugurated on June 22, 2005. Via the foundation, BASF will offer private enterprises from all over South America expertise and technology in the fields of eco-efficiency, environmental education and reforestation in close partnership with the German government agency for international cooperation (GTZ) and local partners.

"All partners are helping to shape the future in a sustainable manner by enabling the transfer of knowledge and technology to companies and organizations in the MERCOSUR region," said Dr. Rolf Dieter Acker, President of BASF SA, at the opening ceremony.

"This new institution does much more than provide innovative technology for environmental management to our customers. It will help us to share with them our 140 years of experience," added Rui Goerck, Group Vice President, Regional Business Unit South America, Coatings & Decorative Paints and president of the Espaço ECO Foundation.

"As well as being a new experience for GTZ, the Espaço ECO Foundation is an opportunity to increase our activities in Latin America. The exchange of technology and know-how in the area of sustainable development will especially help to improve the quality of life in this region," said Doris Thurau, director of the GTZ office in Brazil. BASF and GTZ contribute to the foundation financially and also provide material resources and know-how.

Eco-efficiency analyses will enable the foundation's customers to optimize their strategic decision-making processes. Espaço ECO was able to present an initial success at the opening ceremony by announcing that Braskem, a major Brazilian petrochemical company, had signed the first contract for an eco-efficiency analysis. "We are very proud of being the first company to establish a partnership with the Espaço ECO foundation - not only because we are a pioneer, but also because we know it will help strengthen our environmental performance," explained Roberto Ramos, Vice President, Competitiveness, Braskem SA.

The foundation includes a biosphere reserve measuring some 290,000 square meters that is officially accredited under the UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere program. As well as providing training and advice with regard to eco-efficiency analyses, Espaço ECO offers technical courses in environmental education and has set aside a special area for raising seedlings for reforestation purposes.

BASF's eco-efficiency analysis looks at the entire lifecycle of a product, "from the cradle to the grave," starting from the extraction of raw materials to using the product and ending with recycling or disposal after use. Such an analysis allows both economic and environmental aspects to be considered when developing and optimizing products and processes and makes it possible to determine the most eco-efficient of the various alternatives. The aim is to offer the best possible cost-effective products with good environmental performance. BASF experts have already performed more than 240 eco-efficiency analyses. Their know-how has been also made available for studies in projects outside the BASF.

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH is an international cooperation enterprise for sustainable development with worldwide operations. It works mainly for the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and provides viable, forward-looking solutions for political, economic, ecological and social development in a globalized world.

BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. As a reliable partner to virtually all industries, BASF's intelligent solutions and high-value products help its customers to be more successful. BASF develops new technologies and uses them to open up additional market opportunities. It combines economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility, thus contributing to a better future. In 2004, BASF had approximately 82,000 employees and posted sales of more than €37 billion. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA), New York (BF), Paris (BA) and Zurich (AN).

Source: BASF Coatings


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