Circular economy creates new value chains


Winterthur – The Swiss Green Economy Symposium 2023 in Winterthur focused on new partnerships as the basis for the circular economy. In the service of decarbonization, players from industry such as Sulzer and Winterthur Gas & Diesel came together there.

At the Swiss Green Economy Symposium 2023, experts already presented functioning technologies for the circular economy, for which potential partners were found on site. For example, the president of Sulzer‘s Chemtech business unit, Uwe Boltersdorf, presented his company’s process solutions around the topic of sustainability. On the podium, he met Dominik Schneiter, the new CEO of Winterthur Gas & Diesel(WinGD), a manufacturer of marine engines in Winterthur. The two company leaders agreed to hold further talks regarding sustainable fuels. “Experts need to cooperate more,” Schneiter said.

Sulzer Chemtech is active in the fields of chemical recycling of plastics, CO2 capture, and sustainable aviation fuels. Boltersdorf emphasized that solutions were ready in many fields. “However, we are on the technology side and do not have access to the end market or raw materials,” he said. That is why transformative value chains must now be created in order to actually implement green innovations. This also involves the distribution of risks for new business models, which are often associated with high investments. Platforms such as the Swiss Green Economy Symposium are perfectly suited to forging collaborations for this purpose.

Boltersdorf also expressed his interest in the Swiss Plastic Recyclers Association, whose president Kurt Röschli was also on the panel. The association has been able to greatly increase the number of its partnerships, especially in recent years. Since 2022, household plastic has been collected by a system provider in 30 percent of all Swiss municipalities.

When it comes to implementing new ideas, the federal government has also been pragmatic. As vice director of the Federal Office for the Environment, Rahel Galliker emphasized that the authorities want to work closely with the business community: “Among other things, there are exceptions to existing regulations for innovative pilot projects.” ce/yvh