LG Chem pushes for RE100 initiative to reduce carbon emissions

By Lim Chang-won Posted : July 6, 2020, 10:09 Updated : July 6, 2020, 10:09

[Courtesy of LG Chem]

SEOUL -- LG Chem, a petrochemical and battery-making arm of South Korea's LG Group, will push for Renewable Energy 100 (RE100) in all its operations around the world and curb carbon emissions to 10 million tons by 2050. RE100 is an initiative seeking to source 100 percent of electricity consumption from renewables and accelerate change towards zero-carbon grids.

Considering its current business growth, LG Chem's carbon emissions are expected to reach about 40 million tons in 2050, but it intends to cut more than 30 million tons. "By using sustainability as a key competitive advantage, we will provide innovative and differentiated sustainable solutions and create sustainable business models," said LG Chem vice chairman and CEO Shin Hak-cheo.

LG Chem will establish a circular economic system that recycles not only products but also waste by developing eco-friendly plastics and biodegradable plastic materials. By 2024, the company will commercialize polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT) and polylactic acid, a corn ingredient. PBAT is a biodegradable random copolymer used such as plastic bags and wraps. PBAT makes it ideal for combination with other biodegradable polymers.

LG Chem will set up an energy storage system (ESS) facility for charging electric vehicles made of reusable batteries. ESS has emerged as an effective means to establish stable and efficient systems for power demand and supply. Energy storage demand is growing thanks to the global transition from carbon-intensive energy sources to natural gas and renewable source solutions.

Battery makers are developing technologies to recycle battery packs for electric vehicles as lithium-ion battery-powered cars are just now coming to the mass market worldwide. LG Chem has partnered with Umicore N.V., a materials technology company headquartered in Brussels, on research and cooperation in battery recycling.

Last year, South Korea revised the law on recycling electric vehicle batteries and designated a special zone for battery recycling in the southeastern city of Pohang. Electric vehicle batteries use chemical energy stored in rechargeable battery packs. They reach an end of life for replacement. Valuable materials and metals in battery packs can be recovered and recycled.
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