New roadmap towards sustainability of the Dutch chemical industry in 2050

Published on 22 March 2018

Berenschot and Ecofys have examined how the Dutch chemical industry could reduce the emission of greenhouse gases by 80-95% by 2050. This goal can be technically achieved by putting efforts into targeted innovation and with a package of investments in both the chemical industry and energy sector. Close liaison with the government is also important if an effective international playing field and backing for the measures are to be created. These are just a few conclusions set out in the ‘Chemistry for Climate’ Roadmap for 2050, which has been drawn up by Ecofys and Berenschot on behalf of the Association of the Dutch Chemical Industry (VNCI).

The 2050 Roadmap includes an analysis of possible routes and the conditions each one entails. The intensive alliance, which took all the different technical possibilities into account and which included extensive input from the chemical industry itself, examined the various route options culminating in an integral picture with a mix of measures. It examined not only energy consumption and the corresponding CO2 emissions but also the use of raw materials and reducing the emissions linked to them.

Multi-year investment agendas

The investments in the chemical industry required to implement the reduction in CO2 emissions are quantified in the report using Berenschot’s analyses taken from a previous roadmap for the industry and a comprehensive study of the most recent literature. In addition, the budget for the required investments for the development of energy infrastructure was based on scenario models used by Berenschot. It includes the production of enough renewable energy and developments in areas such as hydrogen, electrification, CCS, recycling and biorefining. The required investment is expected to be around €63 billion, €26 billion of which would be invested into the chemical industry and around €37 billion in the energy system.

Recommendations for realising this potential have been drawn up on the basis of this analysis.