Vinyl Sustainability Forum 2016 - Highlights!
The 4th edition of the Vinyl Sustainability Forum took place in Vienna, Austria, on 28th April 2016. Taking the theme of “Smart Vinyl For Our Cities”, the Forum attracted more than 130 stakeholders from academia, government bodies, the UN, the European Commission, specifiers, designers, architects and all sectors of the PVC industry.
The 2016 Forum provided a unique opportunity to explore the potentially growing opportunities worldwide for PVC to contribute to delivering essential human needs in a safe, responsible and cost-effective way.
Featuring top-level speakers from across Europe, presentations and panel discussions centred on the versatile role of PVC in meeting the future needs of people living and working in urban environments and how it can make a significant contribution to many aspects of the built environment.
Keynote speeches included a presentation by Stephan Sicars, Director Department of Environment, UNIDO on the main outcomes of the Sustainable Development Goals (2015 -2030) and the Paris Climate Summit (COP21) and their relevance for cities. Christos Fragakis, Deputy Head of Unit, DG Research & Innovation, European Commission outlined how the EU plans to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in the urban context and links with the 2015 EU Circular Economy Plan.
VinylPlus General Manager Brigitte Dero presented the 2015 results and highlighted lead-based stabiliser replacement as a 'historic achievement'. She stated: "Our progress and achievements in 2015 demonstrate how the VinylPlus Voluntary Commitment is contributing to addressing climate change, improving product sustainability and moving the European PVC industry towards a circular economy".
A session was dedicated to 'Cities and Water management' with a presentation by Durk Krol, Director, Water Supply and Sanitation Technology Platform (WssTP) on 'Challenges for Water', followed by a paper on 'Vinyl, Cities and Water Management' by Steve Tan, former PVC4Pipes Executive Director.
Reflecting on the Forum, Josef Ertl concluded: “Having heard some inspiring talks and presentations, I feel encouraged about the future of PVC. We are well on track and on our way to the sustainable development goals we have set for PVC; making PVC a material of choice offering safe products, contributing to society welfare. Achieving this vision is worth all efforts in our industry. I encourage all of you to help us to contribute to this vision because it’s up to us to make it happen.”
Brigitte Dero, VinylPlus General Manager Josef Ertl, VinylPlus Chairman
Stephan Sicars, UNIDO