And the chemicals giant BASF too has cast an eye on the exhaust gas. After conducting research on CO2-based Sodium acrylate within the framework of the Acer project, the group is working on the manufacture of Polypropylene carbonate (PPC) from CO2 and Propylene oxide. To facilitate the market introduction of such products, the Ludwigshafen-based group has developed new plastic formulas from PPC and Polyhydroxyl butyrate (PHB) or Poly-milk acid with partners from industry and research.
Is the industry now climate-neutral? Not wholly. Of course, the use of CO2 will help save crude oil, but fossil-based raw materials cannot be avoided. What remains of the green industry in view of the estimated 70 million tons of CO2, which the German chemicals industry blows into the atmosphere year after year through the chimney?
Initial calculations of the RWTH sound optimistic: Over the entire life cycle, the Dream Production would consume less energy than the petrochemical process, say the researchers. The attempted 5000 tonnes per annum are not enormous by itself – but they certainly announce another important step on a path that is very long.