In a leap forward for the sustainable bioeconomy, the members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials approved our groundbreaking Advanced Products Standard. The culmination of over 18 months of consultation, expert working groups and member dialogue, the Standard provides the most robust set of sustainability requirements and criteria for the certification of non-energy products (including textiles, packaging, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and plastics). For the first time, products from recycled carbon and non-biogenic waste will be able to carry real and credible sustainability claims.
The approval of the Standard for Advanced Products marks a milestone in the constant evolution of the RSB Standard as it adapts to the latest technology, research and sustainability risks – ensuring its ongoing relevance to operators, supply chains and end-users all over the world. As the boundaries of the circular and bioeconomy have shifted, the RSB has adapted first its approach for fuels (with the Advanced Fuels Standard approved in November 2017) and now non-energy products.
“The new RSB standard for Advanced Products will be a critical standard supporting both the development of a circular and bio-based economy. It is unique in that it covers a broad range of possible feedstocks and supply chain options including bio-based products, carbon recycling and the use of bio-based feedstocks in complex integrated production systems and supply chains.” – Dr. Susanne Veith, EU Government Affairs Manager, DowDuPont Specialty Products (DuPont) Division
By enabling producers to attain the world’s most trusted sustainability certification for a whole new generation of materials from advanced feedstocks – including bio-based and recycled carbon – the Standard will support the development of more sustainable, trusted products. By moving beyond conventional mass balance and developing a new approach for measuring and understanding sustainability in products – via their real Positive Impact – the new Standard will help guide consumers to better choices.
Some categories of RSB certified advanced products will now carry claims related not to their sustainable bio-based content, but which will highlight the positive impacts of the product in terms of their climate impact, fossil resource saving and sustainable production. By focusing on positive impacts, users can make more robust claims that address the additional value for certain complex processes used to produce materials from bio-based and fossil waste feedstock, helping end-users and consumers to choose the most sustainable and low impact option on the market.
The Standard for Advanced Products has been developed by RSB and members of its standard-setting community, incorporating the voices of such diverse members and stakeholders as BASF, DuPont, WWF, European Bioplastics, SABIC, nova-Institute, NNFCC, Neste and UPM. More than 25 RSB members, external experts and stakeholders contributed to the development of the Standard, submitting over 200 comments during an 18-month process that was launched with consultations in May 2017 and was completed today in Berlin with the final approval by RSB’s Assembly of Delegates.
“What Positive Impact provides is for a step-wise approach that drives sustainable production, seeks climate change mitigation and immediately reduces demand for virgin fossil resources – collectively these measures ensure the reduction of carbon emissions. This is not just a positive approach for manufacturers, but a much needed guide for consumers and a critical standard for suppliers and producers.“ – (Stephen Wetmore, Sustainable Business, Partnerships & Innovation, WWF South Africa)
With the approval of the Standard, RSB expects to begin receiving applications for certification almost immediately. There has been huge interest in the potential of new and novel feedstocks and the Advanced Products Standard will now allow producers the world over to showcase their commitments to sustainable production, climate change mitigation and fossil resource savings.
“The new RSB standard for Advanced Products will be a critical standard supporting both the development of a circular and bio-based economy. It is unique in that it covers a broad range of possible feedstocks and supply chain options including bio-based products, carbon recycling and the use of bio-based feedstocks in complex integrated production systems and supply chains.” – (Dr. Susanne Veith, EU Government Affairs Manager, DowDuPont Specialty Products (DuPont) Division)
“RSB’s new Standard for Advanced Products is a truly groundbreaking piece of work. By focusing on the Positive Impacts of different types of advanced products, the Standard will support companies that are on the cutting edge of sustainability and the circular economy to make clearer, more credible claims that will help consumers make better choices. UPM is proud to have worked on developing the Standard in collaboration with various stakeholders groups. We look forward to seeing its implementation support real action on sustainability and climate impacts, and hope that the example of UPM as certified operator encourages other companies as well.” – (Maiju Helin, Head of Sustainability and Market Development, UPM Biofuels)
“We are incredibly pleased to see this innovative standard – the result of the hard work and expertise of so many members of our community – be approved at our Assembly. It truly reflects both the groundbreaking work of so many organisations in our community in developing cutting edge technologies as well as their commitment to real and meaningful sustainability.” – (Rolf Hogan, Executive Director, RSB)
“BASF contributes to a world that provides a viable future with enhanced quality of life not only at present, but also for future generations. Saving resources is key for BASF and is a driving force for our circular economy activities. Independent and transparent certification systems allow credible claims and support that development. In its recently published strategy BASF has committed to CO2-neutral growth, which will translate into stronger focus on products with positive impact in terms of sustainable development. Therefore, we welcome the positive impacts approach that RSB has anchored in its new Standard for Advanced Products. This new standard supports the use of alternative feedstocks for chemical production.” – (Stefan Gräter, Director Sustainable Development, BASF Petrochemicals.)