Chemical INDUSTRY JOURNAL
How Industry 4.0 is
revolutionising the chemicals industry
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Why it’s good for machines to talk to each other Welcome to the latest edition of the Chemical Industry Journal, which takes a look at Industry 4.0 and the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT). These are more than buzzwords, they are very real concepts that promise to revolutionise the way that industries like the chemicals sector do business. Put simply, they relate to the way technology talks to each other and, for industry, that means creating the ‘smart factory’ in which systems communicate in real time via the Internet. Driving the innovation is a realisation that huge amounts of time and effort is being wasted because too many production and back-office systems are not connected.
John Dean In an age of such rapid technological advance,
Editor in chief
it simply does not make sense that systems working at the same plant cannot transfer their data to others on the same site without staff resorting to laborious and complicated processes or by relying on fudges devised to create short cuts.
How much better, argue the champions of Industry 4.0, if those machines can transfer the data to each other in real time so that operators know exactly what is happening and can head off problems way before they occur? It has to be said that the chemical industry is one of the leaders in embracing new technology and new ways of thinking. Always has been, always will be. However, it is also true that chemical sites around the world have plenty of ageing equipment, machinery and processes that was designed and built way before anyone was talking about the Internet of Things. Traditionally, many companies have gone about upgrading their plants piecemeal, replacing equipment as and when required then relying on their highly skilled technicians to make sure new can work alongside old. Are corners cut sometimes? Maybe. Do some companies rely on fudges that keep things working? Possibly. It’s the way all industry works, not just the chemical sector, and it has done the job perfectly well for years.
Industry 4.0 challenges that approach, though. It calls for more strategic thinking, demanding a more holistic view of industry. Supporters of Industry 4.0 argue that whole processes and entire plants should be viewed as one major opportunity, that each section from the largest to the smallest should be able to communicate with each other in an instant. The potential benefits for companies embracing Industry 4.0 are many but there remain concerns, a key one being the cost. Introducing the IoT needs significant investment to implement it and in an age when chemical companies face ever more challenging margins the thought of ploughing money into new infrastructure can be an offputting thought. The champions of IoT argue that there are plenty of cases in which companies that invested heavily at the beginning saw bottom line benefits further down the line in the form of increased efficiency, better productivity and a dramatic reduction in costly breakdowns with all the problems that they bring. There is another worry, that of cyber security. In an age where hackers can use household devices like kettles to launch massive attacks on global digital networks, a chemical company boss can be forgiven for a few misgivings about the implications for his or her chemical plants, given all the delicate processes which they handle. However, cyber security is making great strides and companies that are prepared to take it seriously will find that the worries about Industry 4.0 recede in time. The feature in this edition of the Chemical Industry Journal examines the challenges and the opportunities that come with Industry 4.0. There may be issues to confront, challenges to overcome, but one thing is certain: Industry 4.0 is here to stay and will increasingly impact on the way chemicals companies work. Industry 4.0 is no longer the technology of the future. It is the technology of today.
Chemical Supply Chain
28-31 Industry 4.0 32-43 REACH
46-49 Health and Safety 50
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Artist 's impression of new building designed by Hawkins Brown Architects
University’s 'landmark' Life Sciences building given go ahead
A new Life Sciences building at the University of Sussex, which will house researchers from a range of disciplines, including chemists, has been approved by councillors. The development, approved by Brighton & Hove City Council, is expected to create around 600 new jobs across Brighton, Hove and the wider region.
neuroscientists, pharmacologists and chemists to carry out research alongside each other. Its laboratories will provide high-tech teaching spaces for students.
Some of the country’s leading scientists, including Nobel Prize-winner and director of the Crick Institute Professor Sir Paul Nurse, backed the plan, which is designed to transform the way scientists carry out research and provide students with a hightech learning experience.
In addition, the development will include a new Bio-Innovation Centre, which will be a hub for growing bio-medical businesses, strengthening the University’s partnerships with industry and creating more jobs in the region.
The School of Life Sciences, which is one of the University’s largest academic units, boasts two previous Nobel Prize-winning scientists, Sir Harry Kroto and Sir John Cornforth and is noted for driving major advances in areas such as ecology and conservation, neuroscience, and drug discovery. The new building, which has been designed by Hawkins Brown Architects, will be set over five floors. The building will include collaborative spaces for staff and students to work in; encouraging molecular biologists, zoologists,
The Centre has received £5.5 million in funding from the Government’s Growth Fund, recently being announced as one of only two projects in Brighton and Hove to received this investment. Professor Michael Davies, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Sussex, said: “This new landmark building will enable us to teach the scientists of tomorrow, alongside producing ground-breaking research that changes people’s lives and makes local people proud.” Professor Laurence Pearl, Head of the School of Life Sciences, said: “Our School produces
amazing scientists, including Nobel Prize winners, and continues to attract the very best researchers from all over the world to Brighton. “The new building will enable our diverse teams of scientists to work more collaboratively alongside each other to make life-changing scientific discoveries.” Professor Nurse, Director of the Francis Crick Institute, said: “Having such a prestigious and world-class academic institution on the doorstep of Brighton and Hove is a major boon for the city and the South East.” Lady Margaret Kroto, widow of the late Sir Harry Kroto, said: “My husband received his Nobel Prize in Chemistry for research that was carried out when he was at Sussex, a testament to the institution’s tradition of academic scientific excellence. “I am excited, therefore, to see the University’s campus being reimagined for the 21st Century, so that it is best placed to continue its pioneering work.”
Professor Sir Martyn Poliakoff, of the School of Chemistry at The University of Nottingham, has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a AAAS Fellow is an honour bestowed upon members by their peers. The recognition is for Professor Sir Martyn’s influential research in inorganic, physical and green chemistry, for promoting science diplomacy and for outstanding communication of science to the general public.
Training the leaders of tomorrow
The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) is joining forces with a team of research leaders in bioprocessing to deliver a three-year training programme from its National Biologics Manufacturing Centre in Darlington.
Croda announces £27 million investment at Hull
Croda International Plc, the specialty chemicals company, has announced a major capital expansion at its Hull facility in Yorkshire. The £27 million investment is in line with the Group’s strategy of investing in faster growth markets and helps Croda satisfy growing demand for its polymer additives. The technology is used by global polymer manufacturers to address issues such as friction, scratch resistance and stability of plastic materials used in multiple industries including automotive and packaging. Croda says that its investment will nearly double existing capacity and enable the company to meet growing demand for slip additives through to 2030. The Hull site is one of three polymer additive manufacturing plants in Croda, with the others located in Gouda, Netherlands and Mianyang, China. Work on the plant extension will start shortly and the new capacity will come on stream in late 2018. Steve Foots, Chief Executive of Croda, said: “The announcement underlines our commitment to the UK economy and a strong desire to invest in the best of British. Furthermore, it is aligned with the Government’s initiative to increase investment in science and innovation and boost exports from the UK. The project
Led by the Universities of Manchester and Kent, with funding from the BBSRC Strategic Training Awards for Research Skills (STARS) programme, the course will embed industrial perspective into the development of early career researchers, to support the next generation of bioprocessing industry leaders.
Supercapacitors research proves promising
Research from the University of Surrey and Augmented Optics Ltd., in collaboration with the University of Bristol, has developed technology which could revolutionise appliances that have previously relied on battery power.
will combine cutting edge technology with optimised production and process efficiencies ensuring that Croda can continue to supply the highest performing and most innovative products to our customers across the world.” Stuart Arnott, President Operations at Croda, said: “This strategic investment will not only provide job security for our workforce, it will also support the local economy during the construction phase. The longer term benefit of this project will be seen across the entire supply chain through a significant increase in the demand for locally grown natural raw materials.”
The supercapacitors technology was adapted from the principles used to make soft contact lenses, which Dr Donald Highgate, of Augmented Optics, and an alumnus of the University of Surrey, developed following his postgraduate studies at Surrey 40 years ago. The team say the technology could translate into high energy density super-capacitors making it possible to recharge mobile phones, laptops or other mobile devices in just a few seconds and could be used across a variety of industries.
Scientist calls for re-think on greenhouse gas technology
A leading green energy scientist who uses bacteria to turn greenhouse gases into usable chemicals is calling for more investment from industry and government subsidies to scale up the technology.
Professor Nigel Minton, from The University of Nottingham, says there is significant potential for the industrial scaling up of the new process which uses ‘gas-eating’ bacteria to ferment polluting greenhouse gases from landfill and industry into products like biofuels and plastics. A report, commissioned by Professor Minton’s BBSRC-funded network of gas fermentation specialists C1net, says the UK should do more to increase the production of the new technology which could capture a large percentage of industrial waste gas from our factories and landfill. The University’s Synthetic Biology Research Centre has been engineering microorganisms to convert natural and waste gases into valuable chemical and fuel products and the technology has been rolled out in commercialscale demonstration plants in China and the US. However, there is currently little industrial development and use of the technology in the UK. Professor Minton is calling for the biofuel subsidies currently given to biomass processors to be extended to the gas fermentation industry. He said: “Gas fermentation can produce low carbon fuels from a range of waste feedstocks
that do not pose the risk of increasing demand for land, like biomass production does. But the new technology is not competing on a level playing field. “Fuels produced from renewable feedstocks are eligible under the UK’s Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO), but low carbon fuels produced from carbon-containing waste gases are currently not eligible to contribute towards the obligation, despite the greenhouse gas emissions reductions they can provide. “This is proving a significant barrier to the commercial deployment of the gas fermentation processes. A broader and more encompassing framework is needed to increase the production of low carbon fuels in the UK. This could be achieved by focusing on the ultimate goal of lowering the greenhouse gas emissions of transport fuels, and supporting all low carbon fuels.” The BBSRC C1net report makes several recommendations to the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and the industry sector: • Long term policy support for all low carbon fuels and products either through incentivising their use or disincentivising the use of fossil resources. This may be achieved, in part, through amendment of
the RTFO, to include low carbon fuels made from non-biological waste feedstocks. Incentivising the use of all low carbon fuels according to the degree to which they reduce carbon emissions would provide an outcome-oriented approach, ensuring technology and feedstock neutrality • A framework whereby the production of chemicals and materials are not at a disadvantage to fuels where they lead to similar benefits. In the near term, there could be a role for public procurement in stimulating the market for products with renewable content or recycled carbon content. In the longer term this may be achieved with an appropriately defined carbon tax • Policy support aimed at increasing the availability of sustainable biomass resources, and/or further supporting the use of waste resources • Improved access to capital for all low carbon technologies, for example through the use of loan guarantees, or by including the technology platform in the priorities of publically-backed lenders • Targeted R&I support addressing specific technology challenges and scale-up.
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Potential drugs for cancer and diabetes treatment New molecules which scientists hope could one day become drugs for both cancer and diabetes have been created at the University of Bath The compounds can increase glucose uptake into fat cells and could help diabetes patients manage their disease. They also reduce the proliferation of colon cancer cells, and could be used to reveal the link between diabetes and cancer, which is poorly understood. The research team from Cancer Research at Bath (CR@B), working with colleagues at the University of Oulu in Finland, custom-built two molecules to specifically bind to and inhibit enzymes called tankyrases which are involved in a cellular process called Wnt/βcatenin signalling. High levels of Wnt/β-catenin signalling is observed in several cancers, in particular colon cancer, as well as many inflammatory diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. In laboratory experiments their custom-built tankyrase inhibitors significantly reduced Wnt/β-catenin signalling and slowed down proliferation of colon cancer cells. Another significant result from their research showed that targeting tankyrases results in increased uptake of glucose into fat cells.
Potent and selective inhibition of tankyrases could be useful for patients with Type II diabetes to help manage their disease, and possibly reduce the amount of insulin administered to patients with Type I diabetes, as high levels of insulin can interfere with other cellular pathways resulting to harmful effects. Dr Amit Nathubhai, from the University of Bath’s Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, said: “It’s early days but our new set of molecules are a great starting point towards the development of new drugs that target the tankyrases and Wnt signalling to treat cancer, diabetes and inflammatory diseases. “We have shown they are potent and selective and we see enhanced glucose uptake and a marked reduction of colon cancer cell proliferation using our molecules. “The next phase of our research is to further optimise our molecules and evaluate them using models of particular cancers and fibrotic diseases to reveal potential opportunities to develop new therapies.
“In addition, we are investigating the effects of our tankyrase inhibitors in other biological models of diabetes and obesity. We hope to reveal the underlying mechanisms that link cancer, fibrosis, diabetes and obesity, which remains unclear.” The research team plan to develop 3D models using cells from patients with diseases such as colon cancer, prostate cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis to better understand the effects their Tankyrase/Wnt signalling inhibitors may have on these conditions. They are also using their molecules to investigate reduction in fat and increased insulin sensitivity in other biological models of obesity and diabetes. By 2025, it is estimated that five million people will have diabetes in the UK which is equivalent to 400 new cases every day or 17 people every hour. The research was funded by grants from Worldwide Cancer Research, Medical Research Council and the Academy of Finland.
Confidence remains strong
The latest survey of business confidence in the UK chemical sector has showed signs of optimism for 2017 after a tough 2016. Carried out for the Chemical Industries Association, the latest quarterly survey published in February, said that while margins may well be squeezed due to higher energy and raw material costs, there is set to be strong growth in capital investment, research & development spending and employment in the year ahead. The report showed that the measures are growing at their fastest rate since April 2016.
95% of companies expect total sales and export sales to grow or stay the same in the next twelve months and more than 80% of companies expect to increase or maintain capital expenditure and R&D spending in 2017. This should help to create new jobs in a sector that typically pays 30% more than the manufacturing average, says the Association.
Steve Elliott, Chief Executive of the Chemical Industries Association, said “Our sector continues to face challenges, including the uncertainty of Brexit, but chemical and pharmaceutical businesses are focussed on meeting customer needs and seizing opportunities all over the world and this latest survey suggests we are in good shape for the year ahead.”
Environmental experts from the Chinese Academy of Sciences visited their counterparts at the University of Birmingham to continue work on a research partnership that could help solve major problems facing both countries. Following an inaugural joint workshop in Beijing, discussions continued in Birmingham about combining expertise in chemistry, hydrology, toxicology and biology to solve problems associated with pollutants that are increasingly threatening China’s natural fresh water ecosystems.
Company awarded funding
University of Liverpool spin-out company Sepsis Limited has secured funding to test a point of care diagnostic tool for the early detection of sepsis.
Report backs carbon capture proposal
The Tees Valley could be the birthplace of clean industrial growth, attracting inward investment and job creation, under finance proposals published by industrial cluster Teesside Collective. The report, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and commissioned from Pöyry Management Consulting, sets out the business case for an industrial carbon capture and storage (CCS) support mechanism that would grow the UK’s industrial base while substantially reducing carbon emissions. Paul Booth, Chair of Tees Valley Local Enterprise Partnership and board member of Tees Valley Combined Authority, said: “There is no doubt the technologies involved in CCS are tried and tested and that Teesside has the concentration of facilities that make it the ideal place to start. The benefits in terms of long term industrial growth and emissions reduction are also clear. “The question this report answers is whether there is a cost-effective way of making this a reality. The answer is a resounding yes. We know the demands on the public purse are
great, but these are also lean industries with low margins. Working together, sharing the costs and risks opens up vast opportunity for all involved.” Lord Oxburgh, who chaired the crossparty Parliamentary Advisory Group that published a report on CCS in 2016, said: “Applying CCS to industry represents some of the cheapest available carbon abatement in the UK economy. The Teesside Collective proposals offer a triple win – the greening of energy-intensive industry, meeting national carbon reduction targets and local industrial rejuvenation.” The total cost for the proposed model, including access to a transportation and storage network, is £58/tCO2, making Industrial CCS a less expensive form of carbon abatement than offshore wind (£200/tCO2) and new nuclear power (£128/tCO2).
The Small Business Research Initiative for Healthcare (SBRI Healthcare), led by the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), has awarded the company £100,000 for the first phase of testing a working prototype of a hand held device that will be used at the patient bedside for rapid diagnosis and treatment of sepsis. The company’s hand-held device can detect abnormal blood chemistry due to bacterial sepsis within minutes of sampling and before standard physiological sepsis is diagnosed.
The Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence (GCCE) at the University of York has been awarded threeyear Horizon 2020 funding as part of research project coordinated by Unitelma Sapienza University in Italy. The STAR-ProBio project aims to promote a more efficient regulation framework for bio-based products and Professor James Clark, Dr Avtar Matharu and Louise Summerton from the GCCE will lead on the development of indicators of environmental sustainability that allow for comparisons between bio-based products and their alternatives. Dr Avtar Matharu, Deputy Director of the GCCE, said: “This project is a reflection of our continued research on establishing much-needed biobased standards. Global society needs to be better informed when it comes to ‘biobased’ especially as more biobased products and alternatives appear in the marketplace.”
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Research project is out of this world The first school experiment to test if plant cuttings build roots in zero gravity was sent to the International Space Station (ISS) in a project supported by BASF. The VP30 trial, designed by Maria Koch, Raphael Schilling and David Geray - three students from an agricultural high school in Ravensburg, Germany - left Kennedy Space Center in Florida on board the SpaceX rocket in February for the month-long project. To date, experiments conducted in zero gravity have only concentrated on the growth behavior of seeds. If cuttings can be used to propagate plants in space, it would be a significant advance in efforts to supply food for long space missions, such as to Mars. Maria said: “We are just hugely excited that we have been able to get our experiment on the ISS. There hasn’t been any research on the effect of zero gravity on cuttings before. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.” For their experiment, the student research team took 15mm cuttings of the plant, ficus
pumila (climbing fig). The plant fulfills the tough space travel requirements because it is small enough to fit the limited space and resistant to the temperature differences of 4-28°C. BASF’s crop protection experts have supported the young scientists with research information, scientific consultancy, materials and equipment. To develop the experiment design, the students also completed an internship at the BASF Agricultural Center in Limburgerhof, Germany. As the cuttings will undergo extreme differences in temperature and humidity in space, they need to be protected against bacterial or fungal disease. BASF fungicides Xemium® and Initium® helped keep the cuttings healthy during the research on the ISS and on the trip there and back.
Dr Sebastian Rohrer, Early Fungicide Biology at BASF’s Crop Protection division, said: “This is the most exciting field trial I have ever been involved in. Working in research has always been about exploring new ideas but until now, our tests have never left Earth. “BASF’s approach to innovation is based on connecting with others. Working with the students has been a great example of this – young people like these will be the future of innovation in agriculture.” Following the trial’s return to earth, the results will be analysed in what is the first school project from Germany to be accepted onto NASA’s education programme. Raphael said: “Looking far into the future, when space farming is a reality, then maybe we’ll be the pioneers.”
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Accolade for Dow
The Dow Chemical Company has been recognised as a Top 100 Global Innovator by Clarivate Analytics for the sixth consecutive year. Formerly known as the Thomson Reuters Top 100 Global Innovators, the list annually recognises the most innovative organizations in the world. Dow’s senior vice president and chief technology officer A.N. Sreeram said: ““This is our sixth straight year on the Top 100 Global Innovators list, clear recognition of the continuing strength of Dow’s R&D. “This recognition is important to us because
it recognises impact. It isn’t an award for numbers of patents, it recognises the quality, global reach and impact of our innovation. “The power of our innovation portfolio translates directly into success for our company, our customers, and for society as a whole.” The Clarivate Analytics top 100 Global Innovators methodology analyses patent and citation data across four main criteria:
volume; success; globalization and influence. Jay Nadler, CEO of Clarivate Analytics, said: “We believe the power of innovation is a fundamental driver of economic well-being, competitive advantage and success, which represents the heart of our business – to accelerate the pace of innovation through discovery, protection and commercialisation.”
Academy of Joint Integrity alerts small businesses to COMAH regulations The Academy of Joint Integrity is alerting smaller businesses involved in industry that they may not be adhering to health and safety standards following changes to the Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations, which came into effect a year ago.
changes, as owners of these newly classified businesses need to get up to speed with the latest competency standards in preventing accidents in hazardous environments.”
Through its alliance with fellow NOF Energy member, TTE Technical Training Group, the Academy provides training at Teesside, whilst also having facilities in Humberside, West Yorkshire and Aberdeen. Its unique mobile rigs are popular with end users who prefer to have training delivered on site.
The amendments mean that a large number of smaller companies operating in industries including pharmaceutical, chemical and fuel storage must now adhere to the COMAH regulations. The Academy of Joint Integrity, which is part of global sealing solutions specialist Flexitallic, has seen demand for its accredited training programmes increase by more than 25 per cent, following changes to COMAH regulations. COMAH aims to prevent the effects of major accidents involving dangerous substances such as Chlorine, Liquefied Petroleum Gas, explosives and Arsenic Pentoxide, which can cause serious damage and harm. The most common areas contributing to the loss of containment are fuel/ chemical storage, vessels, pipework and flexible hoses. The Academy provides accredited, bespoke practical training to graduates, engineers and technicians covering all areas of Flange
Assembly/Sealing Technology and Joint integrity, underpinning Loss of Containment Initiatives. On-site Integrity audits also provide clients with aging assets invaluable technical evaluation of how to address corroded flanges and pipework from a gasket/flange assembly perspective. Gary Milne, Academy Technical Director said: “The changes to COMAH regulations have had consequences for a large number of small businesses, which were previously unaffected by the rules. “The increase in demand for our training services has been a direct result of these
Lunch and Learn events at clients’ premises also provide an insight into the Academy offerings. These sessions are available free of charge and permit the end users to experience the unique mobile Flange Assembly Demonstration Unit (FADU), displaying the elastic interaction of the components within the Flanged Connection. To book a free Site Integrity Audit / Lunch and Learn or Training certification route to competence options, please contact Gary Milne on 07770233001 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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Orion Research Foundation awards grants for research The Orion Research Foundation has awarded two EUR 100,000 grants to two acclaimed Finnish researchers to fund their research in the field of chemistry. Grants have been received by Johanna Ivaska, Academy Professor of Biochemistry, University of Turku, and Mikko Niemi, Professor of Pharmacogenetics, University of Helsinki. The awards are part of a bigger programme which has seen the Orion Research Foundation, which was established in 1957, distribute a total of EUR 800,000 to about a hundred researchers, based on their applications for research in medicine, veterinary medicine, pharmacy and related sciences, such as chemistry and physics. Most of the grants are intended for doctoral dissertation work and postdoctoral research by young researchers. Recipient Johanna Ivaska is an internationally distinguished researcher who specialises in the role of intracellular changes in metastatic development in cancer.
The innovative approach of her research is providing significant new data on the migration and traffic of cancer cells in tissue. Ivaska’s research is anticipated to lead to scientific breakthroughs in biomedicine. Twice during her career, Ivaska has received research funding awarded by the European Research Council, which is among the most notable grants in the world and is subject to tough competition. Mikko Niemi is an internationally renowned researcher of pharmacogenetics who specialises in the effects of genetic differences on drug efficacy and safety. At the core of his research are the hundreds of different transporter proteins in cell membranes carrying chemicals to and from cells. The significance of proteins as drug transporters has only emerged in recent years
and the aim of his research is to find safer and more tailored pharmaceutical treatment. Like Ivaska, he has also received the ERC funding twice. Chairman of the grants selection board Risto Renkonen, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Helsinki, said: “Ivaska and Niemi are world-leading researchers in the field of medicine and pharmacology. “Orion Research Foundation wants to build well-being through new innovations. Ivaska and Niemi are internationally recognised researchers with their dynamic research teams, producing new generations of researchers in Finland.”
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Demonstration plant a success
Global Bioenergies is entering the final phase of demonstrating its technology for converting renewable carbon into hydrocarbons. The first trials on the demonstation plant in Leuna in Germany were successfully completed, within schedule in Autumn 2016 and Global Bioenergies, producing green isobutene. The demo plant will be ramped up this year with the goal of reaching performances close to commercial levels by the end of the year for use in cosmetics, rubber and fuels.
Companies sign agreement
Praj Industries has signed an agreement with Indian Oil (IOCL) to establish two new second-generation (2G) bio-ethanol plants in Haryana and Gujarat, India.
Company heralds breakthrough
French company Global Bioenergies has announced a world first, the production of ETBE purely from renewable resources. According to the company, the breakthrough heralds a new opportunity for increasing the proportion of biofuels in gasoline. Current standards limit the inclusion of traditional biofuels because of their physical and chemical properties. For example, the French standard caps ethanol content at 5% in 95-octane and 98-octane unleaded gasoline and at 10% in unleaded 95-E10 gasoline. The majority of countries in the world impose similar limits, commonly known as the ‘blend wall’, but if biofuels are to become more widely used in the future, this limit will have to be addressed, says Global Bioenergies. Its solution is a new method for getting beyond the blend wall: fully renewable ETBE. Historically, partially renewable ETBE (ethyltert-butyl ether) is obtained by combining a molecule of renewable ethanol with a molecule of fossil isobutene using a simple and proven process. It is used as an additive in vehicle fuel, up to a maximum of 23% and the global market for the product is currently valued at more than €2 billion,
or more than three million tonnes annually. The innovation uses the same process to combine renewable ethanol with renewable isobutene. The purely renewable ETBE holds the potential for incorporating 2.7 times more renewable energy in gasoline than with traditional biofuels. It will also help to cut greenhouse gas emissions even further. Bernard Chaud, Head of Industrial Strategy at Global Bioenergies, said: “Fuels like 95-octane and 98-octane unleaded gasoline are blends of several types of fuels with different properties. Introducing new biofuels with very similar properties to gasoline components will increase the portion of renewable energy, while also complying with current standards. It is vital to prepare for the depletion of fossil resources and to act now to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere.” This first production of entirely renewable ETBE was supported by a grant of the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
Once completed, the new plants will be capable of producing 100,000l of ethanol a day. Under the deal, Praj will help IOCL to operate and maintain the facilities. Praj Industries executive chairman Pramod Chaudhari said: “This is in line with the Government of India’s vision of increased contribution of renewables in India’s energy portfolio.”
Contract is awarded
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has secured an order to provide reaction, finishing, shipping equipment and other systems for ExxonMobil's new largescale polyethylene production train in Beaumont, US. Under the deal, MHI will also provide utility facilities for water, air and steam of the plant. Scheduled to be completed by 2019, the new production train will manufacture 650,000t of polyethylene per annum. Polyethylene is used in production of various plastic products, including construction films, grocery bags, and product packaging.
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SUPPLY CHAIN z
Orders and sales continue their
but margins remain negative The Chemical Business Association’s latest Supply Chain Trends Survey reveals that order books and sales have continued their upward trend over the past three months, whilst current and future sales margins show improvement but still remain negative. This is CBA’s second Trends Survey since the Brexit vote and reflects a return to something approaching normality in terms of the levels of trading activity. For the time being, despite continuing uncertainties, pragmatism seems to have influenced business sentiment, particularly in the short-term outlook for sales. The survey is based on responses from 48 member companies and asks for information on order books, sales, sales margins, and employment, on a ‘better–worse–same’ basis. To measure short-term trends, the analysis ignores responses answering ‘same’ and focuses on the positive or negative balance provided by the difference between the ‘better-worse’ responses. Each year, the Spring survey includes a question aiming to assess member companies’ intentions regarding training their employees.
• CURRENT ORDER BOOKS – MARKED IMPROVEMENT
Members are asked if their order books are better, worse, or the same than in the previous three months. The survey shows
a positive balance of +37% - a marked improvement on the figure of +21% recorded in CBA’s last survey in November 2016.
• SALES VOLUMES – CONTINUE THEIR UPWARD TREND
Respondents compare current sales volumes with the preceding three months and indicate their expectations for the next three months. Current sales volumes are now showing a positive balance of +31% that continues the upward trend from the last survey (+24%). Members are also confident that sales will continue to rise over the next three months with a positive balance of +39% of respondents taking a bullish view of future sales - compared to positive balance of +15% in the November 2016 survey.
• SALES MARGINS – REMAIN IN NEGATIVE TERRITORY
Current and future sales margins continue to be the most volatile aspect of these Surveys, and they remain in firmly negative territory - though have improved since the last survey. Current margins
show a negative balance of -21% (-33% in November 2016) and expectations for future margins reveal a negative balance of -15% (-35% the last survey).
• EMPLOYMENT – POSITIVE TREND CONTINUES
Member companies remain positive about employment levels in their companies. The current Survey shows a positive balance of +27%, a rise of 10% in the number of companies believing they will increase employment over the next three months (November 2016, +17%)
• TRAINING – INVESTMENT IN CURRENT AND FUTURE TRAINING HIGHER
A positive balance of +23% of members has undertaken higher levels of training in the last three months compared with the previous quarter. This is slightly lower than the comparable figure for 2016 (+30%). This level of investment in training is forecast to continue, with a positive balance of +37% of respondents budgeting for higher levels of training in the coming three months (2016, +32%).
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The voice of the UK chemical supply chain Peter Newport, Chief Executive of the Chemical Business Association, provides a profile of his Association and its work on behalf of its member companies. It’s a fact of modern commercial life that business benefits from having a strong and effective trade body to represent its interests to government and to the industry’s regulators. Managers just want to get on and run their businesses, they don’t have the time or inclination to lobby government or negotiate the detail of technical changes with regulators. They recognise the costs involved in this process and their importance to the bottom line of their businesses. At the last count, CBA was actively involved and contributing to the work of 39 governmental and industry committees and working parties in the UK and a further 31 such bodies in Europe and internationally.
not impossible, to acquire if they were acting alone. I suppose this is another way of saying that, if trade associations didn’t already exist, it would be necessary to invent them. CBA is a membership organisation and is managed by its members for its members. An industry experienced professional team based at Crewe, Cheshire, manages its day-to-day operations. In broad terms, CBA’s role can be defined as: • Advocating CBA policies to legislators and regulators in the UK, Europe and Globally; • Communicating the industry’s message in the media;
CBA is a board member of the European Association of Chemical Distributors (Fecc), the International Chemical Trade Association (ICTA) and the Alliance of Chemical Associations (ACA) and also a member of the European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic). This means that CBA can offer its member companies a level of influence and on-going intelligence that they would find it difficult, if
• Providing information and advice to member companies on compliance issues; and,
DELIVERING KEY CHEMICAL COMPONENTS
CBA member companies make a major contribution to the economy by delivering key chemical components to thousands of companies in hundreds of business sectors. • Each year CBA distributor members make over one million separate journeys. • They distribute, pack, or blend nearly 4 million tonnes of chemicals each year to virtually every sector of the UK economy. • CBA’s logistics member companies handle more than four and a half million tonnes of chemicals annually.
• Delivering events, seminars and workshops. The CBA’s membership profile illustrates the diversity – in terms of size, activities and services - of the UK chemical supply chain.
Responsible Care is CBA’s mandatory initiative to ensure the health, safety, and security of the industry’s employees and the general public as well as protecting the environment. Each year, CBA publishes the aggregate performance of its member companies against a series of key criteria: reportable accidents, transport incidents, lost time accidents, waste levels and disposal routes, and any convictions or enforcement notices. CBA also provides member access to a 24-hour emergency response scheme.
STRUCTURE AND ORGANISATION
The CBA’s governing body is its Council, elected from its membership, and led by its Chairman and Vice Chairman, who in turn are advised by an Executive Committee. CBA also operates a series of Committees and issue driven working groups focusing on technical or operational policy issues. Their membership consists of representatives drawn from member companies with specialist expertise in key policy areas and include: • Marketing Committee • Responsible Care Committee • Logistics Committee • Health, Safety, and Environment Committee • Good Trade & Distribution Practice Committee
OUTLOOK – CBA’s Member Magazine + Online Management Briefing Outlook Magazine and Online Outlook Management Briefing are part of CBA’s member communications programme. Both are distributed free on demand. Outlook Magazine is published in hard copy three times each year – in spring, summer and winter editions – and provides a range of industry features and the latest news. Outlook Online, published in eight monthly issues, offers regular management briefings on key industry issues and commercial opportunities.
UPDATE – ONLINE TECHNICAL NEWSLETTER
CBA’s Online Update Newsletter is a quick and user-friendly way of keeping up-to-date on a wide range of technical issues – from regulatory changes and consultations to events, meetings and conferences.
CHEMICAL SERVICES DIRECTORY
Designed for companies providing services to the chemical sector, CBA’s free Chemical Services Directory offers a fully searchable, online directory promoting services offered by member companies.
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CBA provides a range of on-site consultancy services. Recent assignments have covered: • Dangerous Goods Safety Adviser Service • Regulatory Compliance Audits • REACH Audits • Health & Safety Audits • Environmental Audits • Security Audits
SEMINARS AND WORKSHOPS
Focused on ensuring member companies are up-to-date in terms of regulatory compliance, CBA organises a comprehensive range of practical seminars and workshops. In 2016, for example, CBA ran 35 events to help members achieve cost-effective regulatory compliance. CBA has given an undertaking to its member companies to provide regulatory training on demand. So far as we know, CBA is the only trade association to make this offer. Member companies can nominate a topic that is particularly important to their business and, subject to two conditions, CBA will organise a seminar or workshop. The conditions are, firstly, that there are sufficient members interested in a particular topic to make an event commercially viable, and, secondly, that CBA is able to schedule the event within its current programme of seminars and workshops. CBA is also able to devise bespoke consultancy and training to suit the individual needs of member companies.
CBA’s in-house team of experts provide free technical support to member companies on a wide range of subjects.
CBA is an acknowledged authority on chemical security and issues surrounding the resilience of the chemical supply chain. It expertise has been called upon by a wide range of governmental, security, and industry organisations both domestically and Internationally to help to raise awareness and establish systems to guard against the illegal use of chemicals by terrorists.
CBA's Annual Lunch is the largest industry event of its kind in the UK and attracts more than 1,100 members and their guests. It takes place at the Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London, and is preceded by the CBA’s Annual General Meeting. This year’s guest speaker is impressionist, comedian, satirist, columnist, writer, and actor, Rory Bremner.
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Inter terminals optimises storage capacity across europe
Inter Terminals is optimising capacity utilisation across its European storage network to meet increased activity levels. The company’s total bulk liquid storage capacity in Europe currently stands at over 4.25 million cubic metres or approximately 27 million barrels. At Inter Terminals Denmark, three tanks with a combined capacity of 37,600m3 at the Asnaes Oil Terminal (AOT) are being returned to service in response to continuing strength in the heated oil market. A further two tanks, each with a capacity of 20,000m3, have recently been recommissioned at AOT and are already being utilised to store heated fuel oil. In the UK, Inter Terminals has launched a project to convert a variety of mild steel tanks with a combined capacity of just under 34,000m3 at its Immingham East and West Terminals to meet changing market requirements. The company’s project engineering team is adapting former heavy fuel oil storage for distillates. The project represents a sizeable conversion of Inter Terminals’ remaining oil storage capacity in the UK to meet increasing demand for diesel storage. Capacity has been increased at the company’s facilities at Mannheim in Germany via
construction of six 1,500m3 specialised stainless steel tanks. The tanks were built offsite prior to being lifted in place during a specialised 10-hour operation. The €6 million project was completed on time and on budget and with exemplary safety performance. All six tanks are now fully operational. Additional tank capacity is also being utilised in Sweden where Inter Terminals operates a four-terminal complex. Extra tanks are being used to store 20,000m3 of fuel oil at Göteborg and 19,500m3 of methanol at Malmö. Paul Oseland, Commercial Director for Inter Terminals, says fast-moving market trends in the European storage sector demand an agile response from storage providers. “Being able to offer convenient, cost-effective storage solutions in key locations is crucial to keeping your tanks full,” he comments. “Inter Terminals has one of the most comprehensive storage terminal networks in Europe, with 16 terminals
in prime locations for receiving, storing and distributing a wide range of products.” Inter Terminals’ facilities along the eastern coast of England are ideally placed for the receipt and distribution of fuels via highly developed transport links. In Germany, its two terminals on the River Rhine provide a strategic storage hub for the heart of Europe and have efficient access to the major ports of Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Antwerp. Inter Terminals Denmark in the Danish Straits occupies a strategic position for international ship-to-ship movement and contango logistics of oil products within Europe and beyond, while the Swedish terminal complex serves the important west coast and Baltic Sea product flows. Details of the services offered by Inter Terminals can be found at www.InterTerminals.com
Flying the flag 5 strategically located countries in Northern Europe 16 terminals 4.3 million cubic metres of storage 85+ years of experience 1st choice in bulk liquid and gas storage Inter Terminals Ltd +44 (0)1737 778108 Info@InterTerminals.com | www.InterTerminals.com Inter Terminals is owned by Inter Pipeline Ltd. www.interpipeline.com
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European logistics in its element Nick Lowe, UK MD of European logistics service provider DACHSER, looks at how his organisation can support UK speciality chemical producers in establishing new European markets. Despite recent political events, UK chemical product manufacturers continue to exploit the opportunities which exist within Europe, the UK’s most accessible export market, highlighting the industry’s contribution to the UK economy and export trade in particular. Manufacturers of a range of high-quality, packaged liquids and powders used in a vast array of industries from printing to automotive and from electronics to consumables benefit from Dachser’s daily export services to
locations throughout Europe. One customer, in particular, produces speciality chemicals for the screen printing and graphic display industry, and exports to some 30 European countries. Using Dachser’s extensive European network, this company has been successfully despatching products to their European customers, mainly in Germany, Benelux, Poland, Italy and France, for many years. The chemical industry requires high standards of safety and quality from its logistics providers. Daily road services from key regional centres in the UK enable fast and efficient door-to-door delivery of exports across Europe. Dachser ensures complete transparency from collection to final delivery, using innovative IT systems, and combines standardised logistics solutions with specialised chemical logistics expertise. With highly qualified dangerous goods safety advisors in each branch, and the specialist expertise offered by Dachser Chem-Logistics, speciality chemical producers can be assured that their goods are handled correctly and in accordance with transport requirements. Locally and internationally, national legal and safety regulations for the transport of chemicals can be both complex and stringent. It is vital for both logistics
supplier and chemical producer to remain as knowledgeable as possible about changes in legislation across Europe and also to be able to benchmark its supply chain processes against the leading industry practitioners. For its part, Dachser maintains a close relationship with industry associations such as ‘Verband der Chemischen Industrie e.V’, in Germany and the Chemical Business Association in the UK. Long-term relationships between producer and logistics supplier are crucial to success when fulfilling export potential, particularly in the distribution of such specialised and highly regulated chemical products.
BRENNTAG UK & IRELAND The distribution of chemicals and ingredients is not just a business to us. It is our ambition to create true value for our partners through unrivalled market access and expertise. We are the full line specialty and general chemicals distributor, offering: ■■■ ■■
LIFE SCIENCE MATERIAL SCIENCE ENVIRONMENTAL
■■ ■■ ■■ ■■
Strong market focus Dedicated team of industry experts Technical application facilities Unrivalled infrastructure Sector-specific accreditations Full commitment to safety
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Images property of Brenntag
2017 – a year of promise for Brenntag UK & Ireland From its headquarters in Leeds, Yorkshire, Brenntag UK & Ireland offers its business partners a wide range of products and value added services such as filling services and mixing and blending, as well as technical support for various industries within the life science, environmental and material science sectors. Chemical Industry Journal asked Russel Argo, President Brenntag UK & Ireland about the company’s success and its hopes for the future. President Russel Argo’s own career encapsulates the company’s recent growth and diversity. He joined Hays Chemicals, a major chlor-alkali manufacturer, in 2001. Following the management buy-out that created Albion Chemicals, he worked in the sales and distribution network, was briefly with the solvents business and trained as an assistant general manager at several sites. He then became general manager at the Lutterworth site when Brenntag acquired Albion in 2006 and merged their operations. He became a regional manager in the south of England, then supply chain director and business services director, taking on his role as the President of Brenntag UK & Ireland in 2013.
BRENNTAG UK & IRELAND IS PART OF THE ORGANISATION THAT DATES BACK CLOSE TO 150 YEARS – WHAT IS THE KEY TO SUCH CONTINUED SUCCESS? Listening to our customers. Listening to our customers’ needs and challenges, then adapting our organisation to be able to meet those needs head on. We have always, and continue to seek opportunities with our fantastically diverse and often unique customers. Chemical distribution of specialty and industrial chemicals has been Brenntag’s successful focus for several decades.
Historically, we have been focused on chloralkali, solvents and industrial chemicals, and these, along with an unrivalled ability to take cost out of the supply chain with our economies of scale, continue to be core market strengths.
Investment in operational service capability has also been a mainstay of our successful growth story and that lives on to this day with recent announcements of our £50 million investment for the future plan for Brenntag UK & Ireland.
Over the last 10 years however our business model has been rapidly changing, to now also lead in the supply of specialty chemicals and bespoke added value services like specialist blending and formulation support. Our own scale and diversification has mirrored that of many of our customers over the period, with now large coordinated but separate industry focused specialist technical sales teams ready to work closely with customers to develop new products and new application advantage.
These investments are allowing us to make major advancements in areas such as Water Treatment for instance, where a new laboratory and application centre are already allowing us to solve customer’s effluent and water treatment complex challenges.
Adding expertise and new portfolio has also been critical to Brenntag UK & Ireland’s continued growth and development whether that be organically or by acquisition over the period. More recent examples of this would be the 2012 acquisition of Multisol Group - a company that specialises in the formulation, blending and distribution of high value fuel and lubricant additives, base oils and speciality chemicals. This business also brought with it great opportunity for growth in the solvent and performance liquid sector and has brought on 17 new speciality chemical distribution agreements and a raft of talented sector expertise.
Added value is an important and much talked about aspect in chemical distribution industry and can come in a number of forms from improving customer service to providing technical support for our business partners including customers and suppliers. We have decisively up skilled and diversified in the arena of specialty chemistry, to now be in many ways a technical leader in a number of industry sectors within the life sciences, environmental and material sciences sectors. We have built on our established material science teams and embraced new market sectors including coatings and construction, rubber, polymers, as well as dyestuffs, pigments and performance products through our well established Brenntag Colours business. Throughout all our developments, customer service is always at the forefront of our
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planning and investing and as such we now employ close to 900 people across 22 strategic sites in the UK and Ireland, including three sea-fed facilities with a dedicated own fleet of over 100 vehicles, offering a portfolio of over 10,000 products to more than 20,000 customers. Such robust and comprehensive infrastructure provides the necessary efficiency for both industrial and specialty chemical products, creating true value for our customers, and the ability, we think, to offer the best customer service in the industry.
Russel Argo, President Brenntag UK & Ireland
WHAT ARE YOUR BIG HOPES FOR 2017?
I am truly excited for 2017, particularly with the investments planned to support our strategy. We are aiming to further increase our capacity to service customers across all of the segments of the life science, material science, and environmental industries that we operate in. For illustration, a new food application centre featuring formulation, product and stability testing has been completed at Brenntag UK’s Widnes food ingredients hub site, along with a new GMP solvent filling facility at Scunthorpe currently under development to further support us in the expanding pharma and cosmetics sector. The offering of Brenntag Blending Services (BBS), which already maintains the highest level of service at a number of strategic operational locations across the UK & Ireland, will this year be expanded even further. In particular, we have upgraded our blending facilities and the application laboratory at Bradford BBS facility, and are nearing the completion of a major investment and redevelopment project at Lutterworth dedicated to solutionising and multicomponent blends, allowing us to offer our customers an even more comprehensive range of added value services for both life and material science sectors.
WHAT IMPACT ARE CONTINUED REGULATORY CHANGES LIKE REACH HAVING ON YOUR BUSINESS?
The regulatory environment certainly remains on an exponential complex curve. Addressing regulatory challenges is an absolute must across all industries and is undoubtedly an area of strength for us. By leveraging our position with the scale of expertise within not only Brenntag UK but also the wider Brenntag group we are able to support our customers large or small. Whether it is REACH, Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR) or industry specific regulation we will have the capability Our market intelligence shows that sustainability as a market driver will only accelerate, as industry regulations will stipulate the introduction of more sustainable product supply chains. For instance, as both the manufacturer and distributor of biocidal products, Brenntag have been able to assist our suppliers and customers in their understanding of BPR. Furthermore, the introduction of this piece of regulation in 2013 led to Brenntag bringing to market Clorious2
– an innovative chlorine dioxide solution that allows manufacturers to overcome the limitations associated with conventional chlorine dioxide generation techniques.
The chemical distribution sector is resilient, with plenty of growth opportunities, and we as the global market leader are extremely well positioned to meet them.
Another example of our continuous focus on innovation in the environmental industry is our AdBlue business. We have invested in our already significant AdBlue business offering solutions to large truck fleets, and thanks to the expertise of our teams a new revolutionary Brenntag AdBlue dispensing solution which we will launch imminently for the consumer market.
Clearly we all await the outcome of the ongoing EU negotiations. But irrespective Brenntag UK & Ireland remains fully committed to supporting the growth of our customers, and our industry expert teams are well prepared for what may come . We are totally focused on supporting the UK & Ireland customers in all aspects of chemical distribution, including challenges of currency fluctuation, regulatory and legislative opt in/outs or reliability of the supply chain. We will continue to work towards the global Brenntag Group’s ‘2020 vision’, which is to be the preferred distributor for both speciality and industrial chemicals. We are built to adapt to change.
WHAT IMPACT DO YOU THINK BREXIT WILL HAVE?
The impact on economic performance of the Brexit is impossible to estimate at present time. It might bring both opportunities and challenges to our customers and suppliers.
z GREEN CHEMISTRY
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Your advantages with DACHSER Chem-Logistics: n Specialised chemical logistics expertise and standardised logistics solutions n High standards of safety and quality for the chemical industry n Complete transparency with innovative IT systems n A uniform and comprehensive European network n A high degree of expertise in handling dangerous goods
DACHSER Ltd • UK Regional Office Thomas Dachser Way • Brackmills • Northampton • NN4 7HT Phone: 01706 758014 • email@example.com 26
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Actikem Ltd is an ISO9001 certified business, providing bespoke chemical manufacturing and repacking services within the European chemical supply chain
Actikem Ltd | Lilford Street | Bewsey Industrial Estate | Warrington | Cheshire | WA5 0LE | U.K. Tel: +44 (0) 1925 593900 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.actikem.com
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z INDUSTRY 4.0
How Industry 4.0 is
revolutionising the chemicals industry
Every so often a development emerges that represents a true industrial revolution. In the 19th Century it was the dramatic advance of mechanisation and the harnessing of electricity, in the late 20th Century it was the rise of the computer, in the early years of the 21st Century it has been the appearance of The Cloud. Now, we have Industry 4.0 and the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) - and the impact on industries including the chemicals sector is going to be massive. Industry 4.0 relates to the way technology talks to each other and, for industry, that means creating the ‘smart factory’ in which systems communicate in real time via the Internet. At Industry 4.0’s heart is a growing realisation that huge amounts of time and effort is being wasted because too many production and back-office systems are not connected. That disconnect means that skilled personnel ranging from manufacturing teams to sales staff find themselves repeating the same tasks when, if managed properly, their IT could do it in a fraction of the time. For instance, it makes no sense if a machine is producing data that impacts on another piece of equipment but the information is not available to its operators without having to go through a complicated process to obtain it. How much better, supporters of Industry 4.0 argue, if the data from Machine One is automatically made available to Machine Two? The benefits for companies embracing Industry 4.0 is that more data integration results in better planning for production and logistics and makes them more cost-effective. It all makes perfect sense but there are concerns for many companies, including the
need for high investment at the beginning of the process and anxieties surrounding data security as the activities of hackers make organisations feel more vulnerable. Concerns aside, the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0, also known as Big Data, are here to stay and ‘smart factories are already beginning to appear in the chemical sector. In the smart factory, sensors can automate tasks, report performance levels, flag anomalies and generate alerts giving companies new insights into their business processes and performance and allowing them to run predictive analytics to forecast problems before they occur. That is useful because, if you can predict the failure of a key piece of equipment well in advance of the breakdown, you can take action to prevent it. Avoiding a serious failure and resultant downtime saves money and prevents damage to reputation. Analysts suggest that when more flexible access to information happens, it brings about up to 40% higher employee productivity. Imagine a scenario when a maintenance worker receives an instruction on a tablet to change a valve complete with information on the exact nature of the problem. The worker receives step-by-step 3-D
instructions to follow until the new valve is installed. After that, the worker confirms that the repair is done and the information is instantly available to management, all of which saves time and cost and increases transparency. Analysts believes that the chemical sector can lead the way. With more than 20 million people employed, annual sales of $5 trillion and clients in everything from agriculture and automotive to construction and pharmaceuticals, changes in the chemicals industry are likely to have a ripple effect on a number of other industries. Advanced technologies relevant to the chemicals industry — such as the Internet of Things, advanced materials, additive manufacturing, advanced analytics, artificial intelligence and robotics — are already bringing about major changes. R&D is among those areas to benefit. Because R&D demands heavy investment, chemicals companies are looking at big data to predict the outcome of that investment. For example, advanced analytics helps researchers to understand the chemical properties of available materials and consider possible new combinations.
CONTINUED ON PAGE 30
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FROM PAGE 28
Away from the plants themselves, Industry 4.0 helps chemicals companies plan their supply chains in many ways, including: By monitoring chemicals in transit, companies are able to better manage their supply chain because businesses ranging from transport operators to technology providers can work toward common objectives Chemicals companies can better forecast demand for products and expand or contract their production capacities accordingly Of course, the overriding factor that will convince companies is a beneficial impact on the bottom line and there are clear signs that the message is getting through across the manufacturing sector. A new global study called The Internet of Things: Today and Tomorrow, published by Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, reveals that IoT will soon be widespread as 85% of businesses plan to implement it by 2019. The research questioned 3,100 IT and business decision-makers across 20 countries and shows that, while virtually all business leaders (98%) have an understanding of IoT, many are unclear about what it actually means for their business. Aruba studied a variety of sectors and revealed that more than six in ten (62%) respondents in industry have already implemented IoT; 83% reported increased business efficiency.
“The future promises far more amazing things. The most important decision you can make now is how to be a part of it.” However, the study also uncovered a number of obstacles that are preventing IoT from delivering greater business impact; the the cost of implementation (50%), maintenance (44%) and integration of technology (43%) were highlighted as key issues. The study found that 84% of organisations have experienced an IoT-related security breach and more than half of respondents said that external attacks are a key barrier to embracing the technology. Chris Kozup, vice president of marketing at Aruba, said: “With the business benefits of IoT surpassing expectations, it’s no surprise that the business world will move towards mass adoption by 2019. With many executives unsure of how to apply IoT to their business, those who succeed in implementing IoT are well positioned to gain a competitive advantage.”
Author Kevin Ashton, in researching his ebook Making Sense of IoT, commissioned by Aruba, also confirmed that IoT brings benefits across a variety of sectors. Only 16% of business leaders surveyed had predicted a large profit gain from their IoT investment yet post-adoption 32% realised increases. Similarly, only 29% of executives expected IoT to result in business efficiency improvements, whereas actual results show that 46% experienced gains. Kevin said: “Since its inception in 1999, the Internet of Things has been ridiculed, criticised and misunderstood and yet here we are, less than two decades later, in a world where tens of thousands of organisations are saving and making hundreds of millions of dollars from the Internet of Things, using cars that drive themselves, subway stations that sense passengers, algorithms that diagnose deadly diseases using phones, and many other once apparently-impossible technologies. “The future promises far more amazing things. The most important decision you can make now is how to be a part of it.” One thing is certain: Industry 4.0 will impact on the way industry works and those chemical companies that are introducing it are already reaping the benefits. Industry 4.0 is no longer the technology of the future. It is the here and now.
Opportunities offered by Industry 4.0 in the chemical sector By Frank Platt
Opportunity today exists in the digital connection from the customer and suppliers, all the way through production. Business networks are exploding, and transforming demand signals to automation is a clear opportunity. OT IT convergence is not just hype, it is a business reality.
Industry 4.0 has become a significant rallying cry across the globe. Emanating from Germany, the topic was proposed by the government as a digital strategy focus point for industries to provide a strategic advantage.
As a clear constituent to the conversation, SAP is investing significantly in this topic, with the announcement of a $2B investment in SAP Leonardo, a new IOT brand and strategy.
Equivalent government programs in other nations, including China, India, France, the UK, and the US, have also been launched and have all driven focus to the digital transformation topic. From a news perspective, it feels like Industry 4.0 has been mainly part of the discrete manufacturing discussion. However, there are very strong opportunities in the chemical industry for digital transformation. The notion of ‘loT size one’, or smaller, more customised batch sizes, offers ways for chemical producers to separate themselves from competitors and capture higher margins. It is not new for chemical companies to invest in digital strategies; the level of
As a leading business process supplier in the chemicals industry, SAP sees the opportunity to link Things with People and Processes.
Frank Platt investment in automation and safety has been significant in the past twenty-five years. Yet, regarding the digital transformation of the overall business, there is still much work to be done. Manual processes, clip board data collection and Excel-based operations are clearly not efficient nor scalable.
The heavy investment in Leonardo will result in technologies that enable OT IT integration and applications that drive efficiency, leading to new business models for the industry. Frank Platt is Senior Director, Digital Manufacturing for SAP, a global company that specializes in enterprise application software.
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IoT + Process Manufacturing = Great Chemistry By Maciej Kranz Over the past few years, I have flown about a million miles and met with dozens of customers throughout the world and in every industry to talk about the Internet of Things (IoT). Many of them have heard about IoT, but are confused about how to implement IoT for business impact. There are also thousands – many in the chemical industry – who are well on their way to realising significant IoT value in their organisations. In the process manufacturing area alone, IDC has predicted a $167 billion IoT revenue opportunity by 2018.1 What’s the best way to tap into that potential value? I have looked at the cases these companies have picked as their first small projects and grouped them into four categories that are proven fast paths to IoT value. Connected operations – Begin by connecting existing devices and assets to your unified IP network and adjust your business process to take advantage of these newly connected things. When all the devices in a plant – or any facility – are networked, you suddenly have a window into every part of the operation, enabling you to collect data from sensors that can help you to optimise operations. German chemical company BASF has taken this concept further than most with
its ‘Verbund’ concept, which connects, integrates and optimizes its entire supply chain. It has even entered the realm of mass customization in one plant, where RFID tags on empty shampoo bottles communicate with production machines, sending the specific combination of soap, fragrance, bottle cap colour and labelling required for each custom order.
Predictive maintenance – Many industrial operations today run on a 24/7 basis. Downtime can costs plants as much as $20,000 per minute. By using the data coming from your connected machines, combined with industry data and algorithms, predictive analytics can turn into predictive maintenance – identifying probabilities of equipment failure and sending maintenance alerts.
Remote operations – Once you’ve connected your devices on one IP network, adding remote monitoring or asset management capabilities is a logical next step. This is by far the most popular use and is especially valuable in hazardous or widely dispersed environments. Previously, a company might have to send two people out to investigate a malfunctioning piece of equipment – one to fix it and the other for safety. Now, with remote asset management and remote monitoring solutions, many problems can be fixed immediately – without having to leave the manufacturing control centre.
With predictive maintenance you can schedule production, materials, and spare parts as needed, and fix a problem before the next failure.
Predictive analytics – According to Vernon Turner of IDC, less than one per cent of data generated today is being analysed. That’s a lot of data going to waste! Predictive analytics can help your staff sort and understand what’s coming in from sensors across your industrial network, so they can take intelligent actions. For example, energy costs can be a big part of manufacturing OpEx in any industry.
As vice president, Strategic Innovations Group at Cisco, Maciej Kranz is deeply involved in accelerating strategic innovation powered by the Internet of Things (IoT). He has written a definitive book on how to implement and capture the unprecedented value of IoT. The first of its kind and a New York Times Bestseller, “Building the Internet of Things: Implement New Business Models, Disrupt Competitors, Transform Your Industry” (Wiley, 2017) gets past the hype to guide organisations across industries through the IoT journey.
My own employer Cisco started to get a handle on these costs by deploying sensors in just one manufacturing plant. Energy analytics software helped them identify inefficient and underperforming equipment, resulting in a 15 to 20% reduction in energy consumption across the entire plant. They are now implementing these improvements across 20 other factories across the globe, and targeting savings of 30 percent.
In any industry sector, these four well-proven scenarios are ideal candidates to get started on IoT projects. Armed with an early success, you can then build momentum and begin to tackle more transformative IoT solutions throughout your operations.
Association says that
REACH ‘must be amended’
as Brexit looms
The Chemical Business Association (CBA) has called for the current REACH provisions to be amended in order to preserve access to European markets for UK chemical distributors. In a submission to the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee, CBA highlighted the potential risk to its distributor member companies once the UK leaves the European Union. The CBA, which is supporting this edition of the Chemical Industry Journal, said: “Under the current terms of REACH, UK distributors would not be ‘non-EU manufacturers’ as they import and distribute, rather than manufacture. “As such, they could not appoint an Only Representative to comply with the existing REACH provisions. Many UK distributors importing substances from outside the EU may effectively be excluded from European markets.”
The CBA has also raised the need for the status of products already registered by its member companies under REACH in 2010 and 2013 to be clarified. Chief Executive Peter Newport said: “Unless the UK Government negotiates revised terms or some sort of opt-in, UK distributors importing substances from outside the European Union are likely to be denied access to European markets. “It should be a key aspect of the UK negotiating position to secure the continuance and benefits of these registrations post-Brexit. “This will be of crucial importance to the UK industry. Failure in this respect will
irreparably damage a significant proportion of the UK chemical supply chain.” The Chemical Business Association represents the independent chemical supply chain and its membership includes distributors, traders, warehouse operators, along with logistics and transport companies. Member companies employ more than 8,700 people and distribute, pack, and blend nearly four million tonnes of chemicals each year with a market value of almost three billion euros. In addition, CBA’s logistics member companies handle more than four and a half million tonnes of chemicals annually.
The Environmental Audit Committee has posed some challenging questions to the industry. Here is what the CBA said in its submission. WHAT PARTICULAR CHALLENGES WILL THE UK GOVERNMENT FACE WHEN IT SEEKS TO TRANSPOSE REACH INTO UK LAW THROUGH THE GREAT REPEAL BILL? Transposing the REACH legislation into the UK presents the UK Government with a series of institutional, functional, and legislative challenges. In institutional terms, it will have to either create a UK version of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) or negotiate a transitional or long-term relationship with ECHA to allow that body to continue to manage the key functions of REACH. In functional terms, the UK will have to create or secure continued access to a number of expert committees that are central to the effective operation of REACH. The same point applies to the IT systems and tools that have become an important part of the REACH process. In legislative terms, the UK industry’s regulatory environment has become inextricably enmeshed with European legislation. The global harmonisation of the industry’s regulatory framework also suggests that maintaining the current legislative structure may prove to be essential in negotiating post-Brexit European trade deals. This fact should not be taken to imply that REACH cannot be improved or made less costly for business, particularly for smaller firms. However, these changes, whilst important, are most likely to be relatively peripheral and that the central core of REACH would be preserved in all its essentials. HOW WILL THE UK’S ABILITY TO EFFECTIVELY TRANSPOSE REACH DEPEND ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH OTHER MEMBER STATES AND THE NATURE OF THE UK’S FUTURE RELATIONSHIP WITH THE EU (E.G. SINGLE MARKET MEMBERSHIP)? CBA welcomes the Prime Minister’s ambition to achieve ‘frictionless and tariff-free access’ to European markets. Such an outcome is essential to the chemical sector that is massively interdependent, with high levels of trade and commercial dependency throughout the global chemical supply chain. The chemical sector is one of few truly global industries. It is crucial therefore to preserve its ability to trade across national borders on a tariff-free basis. The loss of the UK’s membership of the Single Market and the possibility of new tariff (or non-tariff) barriers would undermine the industry’s competitiveness – though not necessarily prevent the transposition of REACH. WHAT ROLE SHOULD THE DEVOLVED ADMINISTRATIONS PLAY IN SETTING THE REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT IN THIS AREA? HOW SHOULD ANY DIVERGENCES IN POLICY BE MANAGED? In order to prevent divergences in approach, CBA recommends that the devolved administrations do not have a role in
regulatory policy and enforcement. However, we recognise that the most likely outcome is that health and safety will remain a competence of the Westminster government, whilst environmental issues will remain as a power controlled by the devolved administrations. How should administrative and enforcement responsibilities, which are currently being carried out by the European Commission or EU Agencies (such as ECHA), be transferred to domestic bodies? As we have indicated (paragraph 5), we envisage a continued administrative role for ECHA, perhaps even on a long-term basis and certainly for any transitional period. In the absence of this approach, we recommend that the UK create its own independent Chemicals Agency. The UK Competent Authority, the Health & Safety Executive, and other regulatory bodies already have the responsibility for REACH enforcement through UK legislation. They would also, in all probability, assume the policy-making role. WHAT ARE THE LIKELY IMPLICATIONS FOR INDUSTRY IN TERMS OF REGULATION, ENVIRONMENTAL AND SAFETY STANDARDS? Any proposed transposition of REACH immediately bumps up against the provisions of the legislation itself. Substances can be registered under the regime either by an ‘EU manufacturer or importer’. This implies that, post-Brexit, UK manufacturers or importers would not be eligible to register products under REACH. UK manufacturers would by implication have to appoint an Only Representative to handle the registration of substances in order to continue to trade with the European Union. This would not however apply to many CBA distributor members. Under the current terms of REACH, they would not be ‘non-EU manufacturers’ as they import and distribute, rather than manufacture. As such, they could not appoint an Only Representative to comply with the existing REACH provisions. Unless the UK Government negotiates revised terms or some sort of opt-in, many importing distributors in the UK chemical supply chain will effectively be excluded from European markets. A recent CBA survey revealed that a sample of 55 member companies had registered 75 substances as an importer and 61 substances as a manufacturer. As this data applies to the first two REACH deadlines (2010 and 2013), it safe to assume these registrations apply to high volume substances but not the low volume substances that are also critical to advanced manufacturing or formulating processes. The commercial viability of lower volume substances to be registered in 2018 is now in even more doubt given the range of post-Brexit uncertainties discussed in this submission.
This begs a further question: what is the status of products already registered under REACH following formal Brexit. It should be a key aspect of the UK negotiating position to secure the continuance of and current benefits arising from these registrations post-Brexit. This will be of crucial importance to the UK industry. Failure in this respect will irreparably damage a significant proportion of the UK chemical supply chain. WHAT SCOPE IS THERE FOR THE UK TO PURSUE A DIVERGENT APPROACH TO CHEMICALS REGULATION FROM THE EU ONCE THE PROCESS OF LEAVING HAS BEEN COMPLETED? There is clearly some scope for the UK pursuing a divergent domestic approach to chemical regulation post-Brexit. However, the nature and scope of developing nonEU national regulations, along the lines of REACH, will probably preclude anything too radical. Some 50% of CBA member companies are European-owned. A higher percentage trade in substances manufactured in the EU or are acquired directly or indirectly from EU sources. CBA’s landmark agreement (2015) with the Department for Transport (DfT) offers an example of how earned recognition and the regulatory framework could evolve postBrexit. The agreement covers the secure carriage of high consequence dangerous goods and enables compliant companies to benefit from a 50% reduction in the frequency of regulatory inspections. To secure this benefit, companies must be compliant with relevant security regulations, be compliant members of the CBA’s Responsible Care programme, and hold a current independent Third Party Verification (TPV) assessment recognised by DfT and CBA. WHAT PRINCIPLES SHOULD A UK CHEMICALS REGULATION REGIME FOLLOW? CBA advocates a pragmatic risk-based approach in building on the UK’s current regulatory framework for the chemical industry. The UK chemical supply chain sustains a high level of regulatory compliance supported by its industry organisations. Whilst the industry as a whole is committed to providing a safe working environment for its employees, safe operational methods and systems that protect to general public and the environment, it has to be recognised that the cost of regulatory compliance has become a significant factor impacting on company balance sheets. Cost competitiveness is likely to become an increasingly important issue as the UK negotiates international trade deals.
K ey t o S u cce s s f u l G l o b a l Co m p l i a n ce
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The Benefits of Adopting a Registration Management Software
Too many Compliance Departments in the Chemical industry are still using a mix of desktop tools to manage critical regulatory projects such as registration dossiers. As Compliance teams become a strategic part of chemical organizations, software service providers develop solutions to support their activities. In this article, we list the benefits of digitalizing compliance processes and automating regulatory activities. Regulatory Compliance has significantly evolved to become a critical aspect of the chemical industry. First and foremost, business viability and continuity depends on the ability to conform with health, safety and environmental regulations. Failure to properly register or notify substances can result in fines, clients’ dissatisfaction and the ban of a product in strategic markets. Keeping up with these ever-changing health and environmental chemical regulations presents an ongoing challenge for companies. Besides the complexity of the legal framework, the intricate supply chain prevailing in the industry and the limited resources intensify the difficulty for Regulatory Affairs departments to efficiently collect chemical data and fulfil compliance activities. Despite these challenges, many companies are still using inadequate desktop tools to manage and track the multitude of tasks and data necessary to meet legal requirements. Adopting an elaborate, configurable and robust compliance management software can empower your organization to sail smoothly across regulatory waters, improve performance, mitigate risk and ensure successful compliance. EUPHOR, a Global Registration Management Solution, aims to provide a virtual compliance room where teams can work together seamlessly towards the completion of their registration dossiers. Let’s look at some of the key benefits you can gain from adopting such platform.
IMPROVED PROJECT MANAGEMENT EFFICIENCY
The goal of a Registration Management Solution is to standardize and automate the complex registration processes. Within EUPHOR, users follow pre-defined workflow based on the legal requirements and substances’ information. This allows you to cut the amount of time spent on fulfilling administrative tasks and be able to judiciously plan and assign resources and focus on higher-level activities.
ENHANCED DATA MANAGEMENT
The era of time-intensive, manual filing processes is over! Centralizing and automating data collection eliminates the risk of losing documents and allows you to gain more accurate, higher quality data. EUPHOR offers a central platform for all your compliance documents, permitting rapid sharing, safe storage and easy retrieval of information down the line.
HARMONIOUS TEAM COLLABORATION
You can centralize your teamwork in a virtual compliance meeting room where team members can collaborate and fulfil their duties. EUPHOR links users to a specific set of rights, tasks and individual deadlines based on their roles and responsibilities. The system will act as an additional team member, ensuring that everyone is reminded of their tasks and up-to-date with information relevant to them. This makes
team work easier, increases accountability, and improves your team’s performance.
REDUCED REPORTING TIME
You no longer have to worry about spending hours analyzing data and building reports. By automating processes and keeping track of all relevant compliance information, EUPHOR provides you with an instant, real-time snapshot of your projects status and relevant data. With a simple click of a button, you can now build higher-quality reports and dashboards will keep you informed of the progress of your projects, its timeliness and actual costs vs. budget. Overall, let’s not forget that the main benefit is to stay a step ahead of the regulatory environment and ensure proper compliance in regulated markets. Software solutions are here to help you achieve this goal with peace of mind and confidence. So, don’t wait any longer to make the switch from manual to streamlined registration processes! For more information: www.euphoreach.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Regulatory challenges beyond 2018 A challenging and busy year for manufacturers and importers in the EU as well as non-EU companies who are working hard to comply with REACH Regulation through their Only Representatives (OR). There is an advantage that should not be missed for substances imported into the EU market on its own or in a preparation for the first time. Provided the conditions are met, companies have the opportunity to late preregister a substance until 31 May 2017 and benefit from the transitional period for the last registration deadline, 31 May 2018. Otherwise, companies will face the ECHA Inquiry challenge. Starting from June, there is no choice to late pre-register or register directly to ECHA without holding a pre-registration. Article 26 of REACH Regulation applies and Inquiry is the only way to registration, if substance has no pre-registration number. Inquiry is a time consuming process as it may take more than one dossier submission to ECHA depending on the quality of the dossier especially for complex UVCB substances and proof of SIEF substance sameness is an important issue during inquiry. The chemical industry faced the outcome of the first deadline of REACH in 1 December 2008 when all substances in the EU market had to be “pre-registered” unless exempt from the obligation to register. 1 June 2018 will be the day when all substances in the EU market must be “registered” and fully compliant with REACH Regulation. Supply Chain Management becomes more and more important to prove compliance. Especially, when indirect export of chemicals into the EU is involved in complex supply chains, EU importers should be more demanding and make sure that it is crystal clear who in the supply chain of the substance manufactures outside the EU and who has appointed the OR. EU importers should keep the relevant documentation on volume and use coverage of the OR’s registration to be able to prove to Authorities compliance. Otherwise, importer is subject to registration obligations. Professional OR companies act according to Article 8 and the complementary principles given in the ORO Best Practice Guide published by Only Representative Organization (ORO). ORO, constantly in co-operation and collaboration with ECHA, is an ECHA stakeholder and has more than 30 professional members who act as ORs. RGS is a member of ORO since the establishment in 2008. Moving into the next decade, global chemicals management will also continue to be challenging with new regulations in force and on the way. Korea and China are already implementing their own chemicals regulations with the inspiration of EU REACH. Meanwhile, Turkish REACH abbreviated as KKDIK has been postponed as a result of elections, political ups and downs and finally will be published in 2017 according to the information provided by
the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization (MOEU). Although KKDIK is basically a translation of the EU REACH Regulation and an output of an EU Implementation Project for the purpose of aligning Turkish chemicals regulatory management to that of the European Union (EU), MOEU has a different approach for deadlines compared to EU. The substances manufactured in Turkey or imported into the Turkish market will soon be all pre-registered. However, no tonnage bands will be declared during pre-registration and classification or volumes of the substances will not trigger the registration deadline in contrast to the EU REACH. There will be a pre-registration phase followed by registration period starting from the end of 2019 till the end of 2022 for all substances according to the current Draft KKDIK Regulation. The deadlines are still subject to change as MOEU has recently requested the stakeholders’ and Turkish Chemicals manufacturers’ opinion on the final Draft and working on these opinions which may lead to some minor changes in the Draft before regulation is published. The final KKDIK Draft has additional information added to some Annexes as well. It was already known that Chemical Safety Report will be prepared, signed by Certified
Risk Assessor in Turkey. According to the final KKDIK Draft Annex XIIX , the requirements and procedures for qualifying to apply for a certificate and getting authorised as a certified body are finally defined. The candidates will need to complete a minimum of 64 hours of training and succeed in a proficiency exam to qualify for the Chemical Safety Assessor Certificate. Although the names of the certifying bodies are not specified yet, several details about the exam as well as criteria for and qualifications of the candidates and the trainers are clearly stated in this Annex. However, the OR role and definition (Article 9) in the regulation is still insufficient and RGS recommends manufacturers to take a judicious decision when assigning their Turkish OR. Please contact RGS if you are not compliant with Turkish Chemicals Laws or need more details on our services and the status of your substances.
Dr.Yaprak Yüzak Küçükvar RGS Turkey Branch Manager www.reach-gs.eu
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Ensuring business continuity through compliance with REACH 2018 in your supply chain Have you fully considered the obligations and implications of final REACH registration deadline? The REACH Centre shares some key considerations: OBLIGATIONS AND SUPPLY CHAIN CONTINUITY
REACH obliges entities who manufacture or import substances in the European Union in quantities of greater than 1 tonne per annum (tpa) to share data costs and submit a registration to the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). A series of phased tonnage and classification-based deadlines were implemented to reduce the burden on industry, however there is no obligation to inform supply chains of a company’s intension to register. Consequently, there is a possibility that some supply chains may start to unexpectedly dry up in mid-2018 because certain companies may have no intention to register. Only European manufacturers and importers, and only representatives acting on behalf of a non-EU manufacturer can register substances in Europe. Formulators or article manufacturers will need to ensure their upstream suppliers have taken the appropriate measures to ensure continuity of supply. Supply chains are invariably complex and as such, require careful consideration to identify obligations and potential impacts to minimise the risk of having to find another supplier, reformulate or remove the product from the market. For any substances critical to their operations, companies are advised to check on the registration status within their supply chains. This process could involve obtaining grantees from suppliers or agreeing to sponsor or support registrations where supply is critical.
There is often uncertainty over substance identity numbers (CAS or EC), particularly if it can be manufactured by a number of different processes, can be derived from various sources or is a UVCB. Comparison of a detailed substance characterisation report with the lead registrant’s Substance Identity Profile (SIP) will help establish which registration is most suitable to join. If it becomes apparent that the (late) pre-registration could have been in a more appropriate SIEF for a similar substance with a different identification number, this is not necessarily a problem because it is often possible to migrate to the correct submission at the time of registration.
EXEMPTIONS FROM REGISTRATION
Because REACH places the burden of proof on industry to determine exemption status, it is
highly advisable to obtain evidence from your supplier, or better still, carry out your own assessment. Proving a substance is exempt usually requires making an assessment of the origin, manufacture or extraction processes, and hazard properties of the substance. Having prepared and documented numerous exemption statements on behalf of clients, The REACH Centre’s experience is that obtaining the right information from the supplier can be a challenge and therefore it is essential to start gathering evidence now.
DATA SHARING COSTS AND IMPLICATIONS
REACH requires registrants to work together to submit one dataset per substance and the process is managed by the joint registrant purchasing a Letter of Access from the lead registrant. Implementing Regulation (EU) 2016/9 confirmed that joint registrants don’t have to accept or agree to the existing datasharing agreement if they do not believe the costs to be ‘fair, transparent and nondiscriminatory'. Potential costs that could be difficult for the lead registrant to justify include excessive administration fees, risk premiums and annual inflation costs. If after a reasonable period of discussion between the lead and potential registrant a satisfactory justification for the costs cannot be provided, companies can submit a data sharing dispute
to ECHA. The REACH Centre regularly supports clients with data sharing enquires and has, when necessary, entered data sharing disputes with ECHA on behalf of the client. It is important to note that ECHA has often found in favour of companies who have faced a lack of transparency about cost breakdowns.
SERVICE PROVIDER CAPACITY
In the run up to REACH 2018, service providers are becoming increasingly stretched. From The REACH Centre’s professional experience as a service provider and from working with contract research organisations, we know that delivery times are starting to draw out and submitting a successful registration may take longer than originally expected. Companies are therefore advised to start as soon as possible.
ABOUT THE REACH CENTRE
The REACH Centre was formed to help companies with the EU REACH Regulation and has since grown to become one of the leading international providers of regulatory guidance, scientific and analytical services, and training to industry in the field of chemicals management. As the final REACH Registration deadline approaches, we can assist companies with not only managing their own regulatory compliance obligations, but to identify risks to supply chain continuity.
REACH FEATURE z
Inspectors to check safety procedures Enforcement authorities in the European Union have announced that they will inspect how safety information on hazardous chemicals is compiled, communicated and observed in the workplace. The EU says that the main aim of the process will be to investigate the quality of the safety data sheets that contain guidelines on the safe use of hazardous substances, many of them operating under the REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals) Regulation. Inspectors will be comparing the data sheets with the information established by the chemical safety reports that substance
manufacturers prepare to ensure that they match up. They will also go through the exposure scenarios attached to the safety data sheets, which describe the amount and character of exposure to hazards when a substance is manufactured or used. The EU says that one of the objectives of the enforcement action is to ensure that workers handling hazardous chemicals, especially those dealing with substances of very high concern, receive sufficient and correct safety information. The project will map how effectively safety
data sheets are communicated throughout the supply chain, taking in everyone from manufacturers to end users. Inspectors will also be asked to investigate if workers respect the safety information as part of attempts to discover how effectively safety messages are being communicated. Teams from national enforcement authorities will work with labour inspectors to carry out the inspections. The first inspections took place in January this year and will continue throughout the remainder of the year. A report on the results will be available in the fourth quarter of 2018.
Nanomaterials agreement is signed The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and the Commission on the European Union Observatory for Nanomaterials (EU-ON) have signed an agreement designed to provide better access to information about nanomaterials. The Observatory will bring together a wide range of data generated by EU legislation regulating the safe use of nanomaterials, including in the fields of REACH, biocides and cosmetics. Observatory staff will initially gather together information from national inventories, research projects and market studies and will make it available to everyone from the general public to policy-makers, industry, NGOs and workers. Geert Dancet, Executive Director of ECHA, said: “There is already quite a lot of information on
nanomaterials available. The challenge has been to navigate and find information that is easily understandable and relevant for a wider audience. Our goal is for EU-ON to become
a trustworthy source of information that contributes to a well-balanced public debate on nanomaterials.”
Spot the difference: comparing the old and new OECD test guidelines 421 and 422 The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) test guidelines (TGs) 421 and 422 are screening studies that have recently been enhanced to help characterise a chemical’s ability to disrupt the function of the endocrine system and, therefore, its risk of developmental or reproductive toxicity. What are the big differences between the old and new versions of these TGs, and what impact do these have on how you run reproductive toxicity screening studies? One of the many demands that REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) registration has placed on manufacturers and importers of chemicals is a comprehensive characterisation of a product’s safety and a clear assessment of its reproductive and developmental risks. Although the previous OECD TGs 421 and 422 also assessed a chemical’s developmental and reproductive toxicity, the updated TGs provide greater information on the risk of endocrine disruption and have the benefit of harmonising assessment of this hazard internationally.
ENDOCRINE DISRUPTERS – THE NEW ENDPOINTS ON THE BLOCK Endocrine disruption may affect reproduction, cause genital malformations in offspring, cause feminisation in males, alter the histopathology of sex organs or affect the thyroid gland (OECD, 2012). To evaluate this risk, ‘endocrine disruptor–sensitive” endpoints have been included in the new TGs 421 and 422; the new endpoints assessed are: • anogenital distance
Summary of the key differences in the new and old OECD TG 421/422 Old design TG 421 and TG 422
New design TG 432 and TG 422
Number of animals
4 groups of 10 ♂ + 10 ♀
4 groups of 10 ♂ + 10 ♀
Approximately 9 weeks:
Approximately 12 weeks:
• ≥5 days acclimatisation
• ~8 weeks in life
• 2 week pre-treatment smearing period
PLUS additional spare females ordered
• ~9 weeks in life Treatment regimen
F0 ♂: minimum 4 weeks
F0 ♂: minimum 4 weeks
F0 ♀: 2 weeks pre-pairing to Day 6 of lactation
F0 ♀: 2 weeks pre-pairing up to Day 13 of lactation
Thyroid hormone assessments of T4 and TSH levels
Day 4 offspring (retained not analysed initially): • 2 ♀/litter, pooled sample per litter (10 samples/group) Day 13 offspring (analysed): • 2 pups (1 ♂, 1 ♀)/litter (20 samples/group = 80 total) Adult females (retained not analysed initially): • All at termination on Day 14 (10 samples/group) Adult males (analysed): • All at termination (10 samples/group) (40 x T4 analysis) TSH analysis (120 samples, if required) subject to additional cost.
• Daily for 2 weeks prior to treatment • Daily from the start of treatment until pairing
• nipple retention in male offspring
• Terminal smear to determine stage of cycle at termination
• thyroid hormones • oestrous cycles.
The new TGs 421 and 422 affect multiple aspects of screening study design and conduct The new TGs have resulted in the following changes to study design and conduct:
• study extension by three weeks’ room occupancy: primarily due to extended oestrous cycle monitoring prior to the start of treatment and dosing females for an additional week at the end of the study
Measurement of anogenital distance on Day 1 of age: all pups
Monitoring of nipple count in all male offspring at Day 13 of age
F0 ♀: Day 7 of lactation
F1 offspring on Day 13 of age: • Thyroid retained from 1 ♂ and 1 ♀ per litter
Organ weights and fixation
Standard reproductive organs
• additional spare females: to allow exclusion of those females with atypical cycles assessed in the two-week pretreatment smearing period
• the addition of major endpoints: oestrous cycle assessment, thyroid hormone analysis, anogenital distance measurements and nipple counts in males • optional additional organ weight/tissue preservation: additional reproductive organs collected.
F0: parent generation; F1: first filial generation; LABC: levator anibulbocavernosus; T4; thyroxine; TSH: thyroid stimulating hormone
F0 ♀: Day 13 of lactation
Standard reproductive organs PLUS optional: • Cowpers glands • Glans penis • LABC muscle
F0: parent generation; F1: first filial generation; LABC: levator anibulbocavernosus; T4; thyroxine; TSH: thyroid stimulating hormone
WHAT IS THE OVERALL IMPACT? The overall impact of the new TGs is to increase the time and cost of running reproductive screening studies. On the positive side, the inclusion of endocrine disrupter endpoints allows a more robust assessment of reproductive risk and provides unique information not evaluated by other TGs.
To discuss your REACH submission and the impact of the new endocrine disruptor endpoints on your studies, please contact email@example.com
Keep your registration dossier updated after May 2018 The third REACH registration deadline of 31 May 2018 is a milestone for registration of phase-in substances on the market. It will, however, by no means put a stop to the REACH compliance work required by industry By Jens Tørsløv after May 2018. The Lead Registrant must continue to maintain the dossier and must respond to requests from authorities and enquiries from other registrants that wish to join a registration. It is a key requirement under REACH to keep the registration dossier updated. The continued work by authorities and the communication to downstream users is based on the hazard and safety assessment in the dossier. Updating of the lead dossier should be considered regularly, for instance once a year. The focus should be: • Identify new available hazard information on the substance. This may include new studies that have been published or carried out by members of the consortium. It may also include available studies carried out under other registration schemes, e.g. in Korea or China, or scientific results from research institutions. The key requirement in REACH is that when new information becomes available, the registrant has to consider if this should be included in the dossier and if the hazard characterisation needs to be updated. • New use information. All registrations are based on the registrant’s knowledge at the time of the registration, including information on uses received through the supply chain. Additional uses may need to be included on request from new joining registrants, or if new information on uses and conditions of uses are identified. The Lead Registrant should consider including such uses and assess if the use conditions are covered by the exposure assessment in the dossier. • New information may require an update of the CSR. New information on hazard or use/ exposure may trigger a need for updating the safety assessment in the Chemical Safety Report (CSR) and to communicate this to the downstream users via the SDS and exposure scenarios. • Respond to requests for joining the registration. New registrants of the same substance have to register via a joint registration. Consequently, the Lead
© Shutterstock / Avatar_023 Registrant is obliged to include other registrants in the registration through a Letter of Access (LoA). The price of the LoA has to be based on a fair, transparent and non-discriminatory cost sharing model.
and to guide you with regard to the most profitable market strategy. For more information about our chemicals registration services, please contact Head of Projects Jens Tørsløv, firstname.lastname@example.org
SIEF MEMBERS AND REGISTRANTS JOINING THE REGISTRATION
The SIEF members and the joining registrants have their own Company Specific Dossier connected to the Lead Dossier. They have to rely on the Lead Registrant with regard to update of the dossier and should consider the following: • Ensure that the Lead Registrant maintains the dossier as required. The authorities will base their work on the dossier, such as compliance checks and inspections. • Make sure that all your uses are identified in the Lead Dossier or in your own CSR. • Communicate the latest updated hazard and exposure information to the downstream users via SDS and exposure scenarios. As an independent consultancy company, DHI provides services within chemicals registration to numerous clients. Over the years, the DHI team has supported industries in Europe and abroad in preparing lead registration dossiers, managing consortia and submitting responses to authorities. Furthermore, we have assisted in preparing company specific dossiers for joint registrations. We are always ready to discuss your specific registration challenges
FACTS ABOUT DHI
Provides consultancy services within water, environment and health to n Public and governmental authorities n Industry sectors such as manufacturing industries, ports, water utilities, energy and infrastructure n Consulting engineers and contractors n Operates globally and has offices in more than 30 countries For more information on our services within Product Safety, Environment and Toxicology: www.tox.dhigroup.com
National recognition for bio-refinery company A collaborative bio-refinery project, TeeGene Biotech, has received national recognition from a prestigious funding body. The Teesside University spin-out focuses on the viability of removing phosphate contamination from waste water while producing viable quantities of high value lipids and biochar using a suitable microalgae strain. It has been selected as a case study by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). BBSRC, which is funded by the Government's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), is one of seven Research Councils that work together as Research Councils UK (RCUK). In 2015/16 it invested £473m in world-class bioscience, people and research infrastructure, and it currently supports around 1,600 scientists and 2,000 research students in universities and institutes across the UK. TeeGene’s project, led by Teesside University academics, was funded by a Business Interaction grant awarded through the High Value Chemicals from Plants Network, a BBSRC-funded Network in Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy, co-ordinated by the University of York and John Innes Centre. It has established the viability of an integrated biorefinery based on a hydrothermal enabling technology. TeeGene’s director Dr Pattanathu Rahman, based in the University's School of Science &
Engineering, said: 'Microalgae are a promising source of biofuel, high value chemicals and nutraceuticals but there are major technological challenges which currently limit the extent to which they can be used. Our research sought to overcome these challenges. 'We are delighted and very proud that our work has been highlighted as a case study.' 'BBSRC has identified industrial biotechnology and bioenergy as high-level priority areas in its Strategic Plan 2016-2020. The support from BBSRC plays a major role in the development of next generation biological systems and novel bio-processes towards improved manufacturing in industries. “Our long term aspiration is to integrate TeeGene’s core technologies and business aspirations with the hydrothermal processing expertise at Teesside University to create a central enabling technology for bio-refinery development in the north east England.” In 2016 TeeGene Biotech developed a number of collaborative working opportunities in New Zealand after being chosen to take part in a British research and development delegation. The intention was to create agriculture and plant and food research connections with New Zealand’s Crown Research Institutes, leading universities and specialist biotech firms.
NATIONAL HORIZONS CENTRE (NHC)
Plans for the Darlington-based National Horizons Centre (NHC) are well underway, with an architect-led design team now in place. The state-of-the-art centre for skills, leadership and innovation in emerging technology
sectors is scheduled to open its doors in March 2019, with significant support from the Local Growth Fund. Led and shaped by industry demand, the NHC will play a key role in developing the industries set to transform the UK economy, including biologics, industrial biotechnology and other advanced manufacturing sectors.
NEW LABORATORY SCIENTIST DEGREE APPRENTICESHIP
Teesside University’s Laboratory Scientist Degree Apprenticeship began with its first cohort of students in September 2016, in response to the skills demands of two large North East employers, the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) and Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies. The four strands to the Laboratory Scientist programme (Analytical Science, Chemical Science, Research & Development and Life Sciences) were adapted to fit the work-based learning needs of the two companies. Higher and degree apprenticeships are a government initiative aimed at helping employers develop the talent and skills of new and existing staff, combining on-the-job training with study for a higher education qualification. Teesside University is working directly with employers on a wide range of apprenticeships, in health, business, computing, science and engineering. Contact us to see how we can help you develop the skills your business needs. Tees.ac.uk/theforge 01642 384068 email@example.com
Applying supply chain knowledge in authorisation and registration dossiers
Ensuring safe & smart use of chemicals
Managing & creating informative (e)SDSs
The Intelligent Operating Procedures and Training System (IOPTS) Risk Analysis
A new approach for integrating Procedures, Training & Risk Management Benefits of applying IOPTS in your organisation: â€˘ Minimises the risks of human error in operating procedure use â€˘ Explicitly links procedures, training & risk assessment to manage specific safety and financial threats â€˘ Demonstrates to safety regulators and auditors that human factors risks are managed within a systematic and transparent process
How the IOPTS process works Comments from users... “Improved my own knowledge of the task being assessed. Good cross shift communication of methods employed and issues of concern” “Methodical by nature, in depth with genuine open discussion concerning the real issues associated with the task (i.e. safety, real world practices)”
Identify Safety and Production Critical tasks
Hierarchical task analysis (HTA) develops and documents the task structure
The Task Analysis structure is mapped directly on to procedures structure
Human Factors Risk Manager software
Error and consequence analysis (ECA) identifies errors with significant safety and financial consequences
Potential Errors identified by IOPTS are embedded within the procedures and training documentation
• Intelligent ‘Risk aware’ Procedures and Competencies are developed • Insights into risks are systematically transmitted to procedures for end users and trainees • Training times are reduced • Errors with significant outcomes are minimised • Used to support over 100 successful COMAH safety projects over more than 10 years • Supported by intuitive and proven software tool (Human Factors Risk Manager) to minimise time and analysis resources
Please contact us to discuss your requirements or to arrange a demonstration of the IOPTS software. www.humanreliability.com E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: +44 1257 463121
z HEALTH AND SAFETY
Applying EI 15 4th Edition at UK Airport Fuel Storage Sites Before
The Energy Institute’s model code of safe practice part 15 (EI 15), acknowledges the lack of an industry agreed approach for determining when the formation of flammable mists is possible for releases of high flash point materials. This leaves hazardous area classification at sites with these materials with some areas of uncertainty, particularly those within temperate climates such as the UK. Hazardous area classification is not necessary for these sites unless a mist can be formed or a release can impact a hot surface, meaning that without an agreed approach to mist formation, affected sites are left with a tough decision in regards to the approach they take to risk management in and around their plant. It might be tempting to simply apply a ‘blanket zone’ over all plant items. With this approach, equipment is surrounded by large zones, and in some circumstances a single zone across the establishment may be applied. With no agreed approach, assuming that flammable mists are possible regardless is a conservative means to meet legal duties and removes the element of uncertainty. This approach is convenient, too; it takes away the decision making and makes for quick classification. Blanket zoning might seem easy at first, but the long term consequences must be considered. Difficulties will come to light when all equipment across the site is selected, installed and maintained to standards that are disproportionate to the risk, leading to
avoidable expenditure of valuable time and resource. Instead, a site might take a more proportionate approach. Despite the known uncertainties, with the right experience and technical understanding of the substance in question, RAS have been able to apply EI 15 at sites such as airport fuel storage facilities. EI 15 provides three separate approaches to hazardous area classification; the direct example approach for common facilities in open areas, the risk based approach and pointsource approach. In this circumstance, the risk based approach is deemed most suitable, removing the danger of over simplifying the classification and avoiding the difficulties of obtaining manufacturer information for equipment failure. However, where the tabulated method in the risk based approach requires more resolution, modelling can be applied, as long as the parameters match those used to formulate the look up tables in the guidance. Point-source information can also be useful for standard items of equipment, such as sample points or vents, from which releases are operationally controlled and the grade of release can be determined based on the establishment’s specific activity. For example, at airport fuel storage sites, tanks are bottom filled, removing the potential for mist formation and consequently the removal of any hazardous area classification inside the tank and around vents.
Example of the application of EI 15 at a generic airport fuel storage site
It is important to be able to support any decisions made, and therefore it is advisable that all apparatus is tabulated and justifications provided regardless of the classification. Apparatus should be identified not just from P&IDs, but from site walk-arounds to ensure that additional plant items such as sample storage and waste filter receptacles are given due consideration. The results of this approach can be seen in the pictorial example in Figure 1. In the ‘after’ image, large areas of the site are determined to be outside of any hazardous zone. For the operator, this leads to less equipment within classified zones and ultimately more flexibility to select, install, inspect and maintain the equipment in line with the risk. Controls such as access, work permits and control of ignition sources are more manageable. There is a larger area to locate new equipment and equipment outside of zones is no longer subject to superfluous expenditure. Ultimately, the correct application of EI 15 means that time and resource is focussed in the right places. Jennifer Hill: Jennifer.Hill@ras.ltd.uk
Carolyn Nicholls Carolyn.Nicholls@ras.ltd.uk
RAS RISK & HAZARD MANAGEMENT
Understanding and facilitating the effective management of risk is our core business. Our expertise covers the full range of risk assessment and management services across:
Only when the risk facing an organisation is well understood can it be effectively managed.
Key to the successful identification, assessment and management of risk is engagement with the right
people, using the right processes at the right time. We believe we are different to many of our competitors and our approach is distinctive, we don’t always walk the well-trodden path but look at each client’s particular risk context and develop a tailored solution, working in partnership with our client. We work across all aspects of risk, from Quantitative Risk Assessments and Predictive &
Consequence modelling, through to the ‘softer’ risks which may affect an organisation’s reputation.
+44 (0) 1244 674 612 • email@example.com • www.ras.ltd.uk
z DEVELOPING TALENT
Why developing home grown talent has never been more important
Brexit, the skills gap and the forthcoming apprenticeship levy would each in their own right impact the chemicals industry – the combined effect leaves John McCarthy from The Outward Bound Trust to argue that now is the time to develop your home grown talent. Here we explore four reasons why there has never been a better time to grow your own.
ADDRESSING THE SKILLS GAP IS A PRIORITY In or out of Europe, the chemicals sector is facing an impending skills gap. The issues of an aging workforce and challenges in recruiting the right young talent were well documented pre-Brexit.
Cogent’s research showed skills shortages in innovation, change, management, leadership and H&S . A gap in transferable skills including communication and team working were also highlighted by ABPI in November 2015 . The challenges surrounding an aging workforce may not be new, but the demand for new recruits may be even harder to tackle post-Brexit. Addressing the skills gap will require a creative approach, taking recruitment beyond the traditional candidate pools and seizing new opportunities to upskill and retrain your current workforce.
GETTING READY FOR BREXIT
Love or hate Marmite, the media frenzy reporting its shortage on our supermarket shelves served as a reminder to us all that as a nation we rely heavily on imports. A rise in the cost of imports seems inevitable, and recruiters are likely to face a parallel challenge. A 2015 survey of chemical businesses in the UK by the Chemical Industries Association (CIA) showed that: • 60% of companies recruit graduates from overseas.
• Nearly 40% of these companies think the skills and knowledge of overseas graduates are stronger than those educated in the UK. CIA’s post-Brexit survey also showed that: • 71% of companies predict that employment levels will remain the same or increase We may not yet know what ‘Brexit means Brexit’ will look like – but early indicators show how employers are preparing. The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) annual survey showed that the number of graduate jobs on offer shrunk by nearly 8% post-Brexit (versus a 2% growth prediction pre-Brexit). Those surveyed said in reaction to Brexit they had shifted their early talent focus to apprenticeships. As research from the Skills Funding Agency showed that apprentices are statistically more likely to stay with an organisation than other recruits, this may reduce your need for overseas recruitment in the long-term.
MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR APPRENTICESHIP LEVY
Despite calls to delay the apprenticeship levy post-Brexit, it is going ahead as planned. If your organisation’s UK payroll is over £3M per year, from April 2017 you will pay 0.5% to the levy each month. Your funds will go into a digital account and from May 2017 you will be able to spend them on your apprentice training. New apprenticeship standards developed by employers specify the exact knowledge, skills and behaviours that are required of the future chemicals sector workforce. As per employers’ wishes, behaviour requirements are now an integral component of each apprenticeship.
The right behaviours are critical for your workplace and these skills are an example of those that have been identified across your sector: • Communication, teamwork, time management, the ability to work independently, understand impact of work on others and change management (Taken from the Life and Industrial Sciences apprenticeship standards) Using your levy on behavioural development will also support the growth of the employability skills many young apprentices will need as they transition from education into employment and help others to operate confidently in their new role.
To remain competitive in a post-Brexit Europe it is essential that the sector’s current and future workforce are equipped with 21st century skills. A 16-year old apprentice starting out today may not reach retirement age until 2068. As you think about the roles you will need, remember that in 50 years’ time the technical skills and knowledge provided in 2016 will likely appear archaic, but get the behaviours right and that should see your home grown talent throughout their careers. Growing your own talent allows you the exciting opportunity to shape the development that your organisation needs for the future. To continue the discussion about why now is time to invest in your home grown talent please contact John McCarthy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Supporting enterprises in the field of Environment, Health & Safety
Our services: > GBK – EMTEL® 24/7 Emergency Response
> Management Systems
> Regulatory Compliance
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GBK GmbH Global Regulatory Compliance Königsberger Str. 29 55218 Ingelheim/Germany Managing Director: Bjoern Noll
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