Renewable materials offer opportunity to meet UN goals

This text is sponsored by Tetra Pak.

Sourcing renewable materials is a very important — and sometimes ignored — option to reduce the carbon footprint and climate impact of your products. Should you can take a fossil-based substrate and replace it with something renewable, something that regrows and is responsibly sourced, you’re often able to scale back the carbon footprint and overall environmental impact of your product. Often without having any noticeable impact on the standard of the product itself.

Firms are likely to have a high level of concentrate on the end-of-life sustainability of their products — and rightly so. But the start of life and sourcing of materials, including how they’re grown, harvested or extracted, and if that material is renewable and responsibly sourced, can have a big impact on the general sustainability of your products and carbon footprint.

Based on Stora Enso, a world provider of renewable solutions in packaging, biomaterials, wood constructions and paper, its product lifecycle analyses show how renewable materials reduce carbon footprints. In 2019, their products saved an estimated 20 million tons of carbon dioxide by substituting for fossil-based materials.

Renewable materials and SDGs

For the reason that United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted in 2015, responsible and socially conscious businesses across the globe have identified how they will align with them.

My colleagues and I at Tetra Pak have identified 11 SDGs that we’re actively working on. As a food and beverage processing and packaging solutions provider, we’re committed to creating food protected and available, in every single place, combating hunger (SDG 2). By way of climate motion (SDG 13) and responsible production (SDG 12), we aim to launch a completely renewable shelf-stable package by 2023.

Along with a more sustainable future, there are business advantages to aligning with the SDGs. Based on a Morning Seek the advice of survey, “Firms that make a public commitment to SDGs are seen as caring about customers and the community, however the intent must be real, as there’s skepticism.” Luckily, there are methods businesses can ensure their renewable materials sourcing is credible — and verifiable.

Switching to materials from renewable sources which can be sustainably and responsibly managed can specifically play a job in meeting SDGs 12 and 15.

Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production

This goal recognizes that unsustainable patterns of consumption and production are the basis reason behind climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution. Sourcing renewable materials which can be responsibly managed can support biodiversity and reduce carbon emissions, thereby lowering climate impact.

One measurable goal (12.2) is to “achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources” by 2030. Renewable resources play a very important role on this goal related to material footprints. And businesses can do their part.

Take note that consumption means various things for various products, and it happens at many stages of the worth chain. There are raw materials that get consumed by manufacturers to make other materials. Those materials get become clothing, food or other products. After which there’s the final word consumption by the buyer.

Goal 15: Life on land

This goal is concentrated on protecting, restoring and promoting sustainable use of our land. Twenty-five million acres of forest are destroyed every 12 months, with almost 90 percent of world deforestation on account of agricultural expansion. Renewable resources resembling sustainably managed forests can support biodiversity and supply vital habitats for animals.

Business considerations for renewable materials

For businesses seeking to meet SDGs 12 and 15 and all in favour of sourcing more renewable materials, keep two vital considerations in mind.

1. Certification & traceability is vital

Renewable resources are only renewable in the event that they are sustainably and responsibly managed. Depending on the fabric, there are a number of third-party certifications that confirm the authenticity and sustainability of resources and trace them throughout the worth chain. For instance, Tetra Pakuses paperboard from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified forests and other controlled sources to make sure sustainability and traceability.

Many other third-party certifications exist, depending on the fabric. From sugar cane for plant-based polymers to wool for clothing, these certifications offer traceability and authentication to make sure that the gathering of the fabric isn’t doing harm to the environment and is in actual fact sustainable.

2. Quality, safety and convenience are non-negotiable

It almost goes without saying, but within the switch to renewable materials it’s best to never compromise on quality.

In my world, we’re focused on packaging that protects the standard of the food or beverage inside. We introduced the world’s first fully renewable package in 2015, and this 12 months, we’re testing the industry’s first fiber-based barrier to interchange the non-renewable aluminum barrier in shelf-stable cartons.

While we proceed to innovate more ways to make sure we’re creating essentially the most sustainable package we will, we must not ever compromise on food safety or the buyer’s experience with our package.

Innovation still needs to fulfill consumer needs the identical or higher than what they expect. Because if a product doesn’t meet consumer needs, or it’s not as convenient, or they only don’t prefer it as much, they’ll pick one other product.

Businesses in search of to scale back their climate impact and align with the SDGs have a responsibility to look not only on the end-of-life of their products, but at the entire life cycle, including the materials that go into their products from the very start and throughout. Renewable materials offer a chance to create products that meet consumer demands in a low-carbon, low-impact way.


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