“Better environment, better life” – Starting Ventures project enhances waste disposal conditions in Guangxi, China
BASF’s Starting Ventures program funds projects combining social impact, business value and a new business approach. The Starting Ventures project “Better environment, better life” in China is a cooperation between the BASF divisions Intermediates, Care Chemicals and Coatings that co-developed a solution for the cleaning of environmental sanitation facilities with a surfactant formulation.
The landscape in Du'an Yao Autonomous County in the region of Guangxi in the south of China is breathtaking. Many of the residents belong to minority ethnic groups, have low incomes and live far away from the commercial markets. The local environmental sanitation facilities (ESF) lack a good cleaning formulation for their assets, such as waste containers, garbage trucks, trash compactors and waste transfer stations. Until now, they have used large quantities of water to wash the surfaces, but the runoff contains bacteria that can pose a threat to the hygiene and health of the local population. As there are currently no water treatment plants, the wastewater is directly released into the local waterways.
“The companies that clean the ESF need a better cleaning solution, one that is environmentally friendly, achieves a more hygienic cleaning result, uses less water and reduces corrosion,” says project leader Edward Xu from BASF. Xu came up with the idea for this project when he visited the region and thought about how to help this area and at the same time turn it into a business opportunity for BASF. He got in touch with colleagues from other operating divisions, utilizing his knowledge of BASF’s portfolio and which products might be suitable for solving this issue. Then they contacted the Guangxi Zhongtian Shengxiang Urban Investment & Service Company, one of the potential customers. Together the project group developed a customized cleaning solution for the environmental sanitation facilities. They also set up a scientific training and education program for ESF cleaning procedures to save water and extend the facilities’ life cycle.
The product successfully passed the trial phase end of 2018 and will be launched in 2019. With this project, BASF contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) (1) No Poverty, (6) Clean Water and Sanitation and (8) Decent Work and Economic Growth.