BASF to reduce global emissions by 25% by 2030
Photo courtesy of BASF

BASF to reduce global emissions by 25% by 2030

BASF confirmed that by 2030 it aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 25% compared with 2018 and is maintaining its goal of net-zero emissions globally by 2050. On its path to reducing global emissions to 16.4 million metric tons by 2030, BASF is publishing an annual CO2 emissions forecast for the BASF Group as part of its outlook with a corridor of plus or minus 0.5 million metric tons.

“There is a brutal war raging in Europe with far-reaching consequences for both people and the economy. Nevertheless, we must not lose sight of the greatest global challenge of our time — climate change,” said Dr. Martin Brudermüller, chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE. “Across BASF, we are working intensively to implement a large number of projects to further reduce our CO2 emissions significantly and achieve our ambitious climate targets. By cooperating with suppliers of raw materials we are also taking steps to reduce our product-related emissions. In this way, we are driving forward our transformation and supporting customers in their efforts to reduce emissions in their product portfolios,” he said.

100% of its global power needs will be supplied by renewable energy by 2030

In 2021, BASF reduced CO2 emissions by around 3% compared with 2020 despite significantly higher production volumes. To a large extent this was due to the increased use of renewable energy. Switching power to renewable energy will be the main driver of emission reduction until 2025, BASF said. In 2021, renewables accounted for 16% of BASF Group’s global power demand. By 2030, the company projects that 100% of its 2021 global power demand will be obtained from renewable sources.

To cover its demand for renewable energy, BASF is pursuing a make-and-buy strategy. This includes investing in its own renewable power assets and purchasing green power from third parties. In 2021, BASF purchased a stake in Vattenfall’s wind farm Hollandse Kust Zuid (HKZ). Once fully operational, it will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm with a total installed capacity of 1.5 gigawatts. The project is expected to become fully operational in 2023. Furthermore, BASF has signed 25-year power purchase agreements (PPAs) with ENGIE and Ørsted for the supply of significant amounts of renewable electricity from wind and solar power in Europe. In the United States, BASF has concluded long-term supply contracts for wind and solar power for its Freeport and Pasadena sites. In China, BASF has signed agreements with suppliers for the purchase of renewable power for its new Verbund site in Zhanjiang. This agreement is the largest volume and longest green electricity  purchase framework agreement that has been signed in China. Supported by this  deal and the partnerships with other energy suppliers, BASF is further accelerating  its plan to power the entire Zhanjiang Verbund site with renewable electricity and  targets to achieve 100% by 2025, earlier than originally planned. With the  use of renewable electricity, BASF is a frontrunner in the process industry in China.

Next step: Net-zero and low-PCF products  

“BASF is making significant progress on its path to achieving its emission reduction  targets. And we are ready for the next step — achieving sustainable growth through  products with reduced carbon footprints,” Brudermüller said. By using green power,  low-carbon steam, bio-based feedstocks and highly efficient processes BASF is  able to offer its customers net-zero products and products with a low product carbon  footprint (PCF). 

The company expects that demand for such products will exceed  supply in the medium-term and that their market value will more than compensate  for the higher production costs. BASF believes that end consumers will drive the  transformation towards net-zero and low-PCF consumer products since they are  increasingly requesting alternatives to conventional consumer products and want to  make a personal contribution to reducing emissions. BASF said it aims to be  among the first companies to provide large volumes of as many products as possible  with reduced carbon footprints. 

Many of BASF’s customers are eager to reduce the carbon footprint of their products to reach their own emission goals. For this, a new level of transparency is required, the German chemical company said.

BASF revealed it has developed an in-house digital solution to calculate the PCFs for  approximately 45,000 sales products. In this tool, BASF currently has to use  industrial averages and values from commercial databases as the basis to include upstream Scope 3 emissions. In order to create more transparency on Scope 3  emissions, i.e., product-related emissions, BASF is intensively working with suppliers to improve the data for the  raw materials it purchases from them. BASF supports suppliers by sharing  knowledge of evaluation and calculation methods. In this way, the company is  contributing to the standardization of PCF calculations.