The partnership builds on last year's agreement between AkzoNobel and Solvay, whereby the company progressively increases the use of Solvay's bio-based epichlorohydrin, or Epicerol, in its coatings products.
Rather than buying Epicerol directly from Solvay, AkzoNobel obtains epoxy resins from a number of intermediate producers. The company then uses these epoxy resins as ingredients in various coatings.
Under this new agreement, Solvay, AkzoNobel and EY will develop a "chain of custody methodology" to ensure that even in situations where no physical segregation of petro and bio-based materials is practiced, volumes may still be assigned and reported.
"This is a vital next step to measure and share with partners our progress in using Solvay's bio-based epichlorohydrin," explained Peter Nieuwenhuizen, AkzoNobel’s Director of Innovation and Partnerships.
Added Jean-Luc Préat, Head of the Epicerol business in Solvay's Emerging Biochemicals Global Business Unit: "We welcome the expertise of EY to monitor progress in the implementation of this innovative partnership along the value chain."
Epicerol has a substantially lower carbon footprint than fossil-produced epichlorohydrin and is already used in AkzoNobel’s coating products worldwide. By 2016, the company aims to source 20 percent of its total epichlorohydrin demand as bio-based material.
"This methodology will not just be useful for Epicerol, but can be applied more broadly in chemical value chains," said Franc van den Berg, EY partner for Cleantech and Sustainability. "This is an important enabler for establishing a stronger position for bio-based chemicals in the chemical business."