Chemistry of sustainability: Giants could increase cash flow by adjusting practices

New research examines the sustainable value of global chemical companies.
Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor on

A survey released by a research team in Europe takes a peek into the performance of some of the world's largest chemical companies and extrapolates how well those companies might do if they paid more attention to sustainable business practices

The study, with the scintillating title "Sustainable Value Creation by Chemical Companies," found that Air Liquide (of France) and BASF (of Germany), which both have strong sustainability programs, are using their resources up to five times more efficiently than their competitors. That means they are generating more cash flow.

What it also means is that they are using one of the world's most precious resources, water, more responsibly than their rivals. We all beat ourselves up over energy efficiency today, but water usage will absolutely dominate more business case studies and more media coverage moving forward.

The research team actually calculated a sustainable value for the all the companies studies. This takes into the account the following: total assets, water usage, chemical oxygen demand of waste water, hazardous waste creation, emissions of greenhouse gases and volatile organic compound, and social factors such as accidents.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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