For several years we have been advising Wienerberger AG on the further development of its sustainability management. This includes sustainability reporting in accordance with the GRI standard, the preparation of the Communication on Progress for the UN Global Compact and the preparation of the report on non-financial performance in accordance with the Austrian Sustainability and Diversity Improvement Act (NaDiVeG). The 2019 Wienerberger Non-financial Performance has been available for download on the company website since March 30, 2020.
With this project, the German SAICM Focal Point, located at the German Umweltbundesamt (Federal Environment Agency, Dessau), wants to make a forward-looking contribution to the “Sound Management of Chemicals and Waste” (SMCW) by developing indicators and milestones to support the concrete achievement of objectives within the concept of sustainable chemistry. The contractors are N3 Nachhaltigkeitsberatung Dr. Friege & Partner, Voerde (project management), and the Collaborating Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CSCP), Wuppertal, as well as in a subcontract the BZL GmbH and the Akademie Dr. Obladen, Berlin.
Im Dezember 2019 haben Henning Friege, Beate Kummer, Klaus-Günter Steinhäuser, Joachim Wuttke und Barbara Zeschmar-Lahl einen aktualisierten Beitrag zur Schnittstellen-Problematik von Chemikalien-, Produkt- und Abfallrecht beim Environmental Law Network International veröffentlicht (elni Review 2019, 39-40, ISSN 1618-2502).
On November 20, 2019, the book “Wastewater Treatment Residues as Resources for Biorefinery Products and Biofuels” edited by Jose Antonio Olivares, Daniel Puyol, Juan Antonio Melero and Javier Dufour was published by ELSEVIER. In this book, Dr. Barbara Zeschmar-Lahl has contributed the introductory chapter “I.1. Waste as a resource”.
As in previous years, BZL GmbH provided Wienerberger AG with scientific advice for the preparation of its sustainability report. The 2018 Wienerberger Sustainability Report was awarded second place in the “Large Companies” category of the Austrian Sustainability Reporting Award (ASRA) on November 11, 2019. This award is sponsored annually by the Chamber of Certified Public Accountants in cooperation with the Institute of Austrian Certified Public Accountants, the Ministry of Life, the Federal Environment Agency, the Confederation of Austrian Industries, respACT (the Austrian Business Council for Sustainable Development), the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber, and the Austrian Society for Environment and Technology.
The report entitled “Digital – Innovativ – Nachhaltig” (“Digital – Innovative – Sustainable”) presents the sustainability strategy of LINZ AG and shows the innovative and digital services and products with which this largest municipal enterprise in Upper Austria makes a significant contribution to the future viability of the Linz area. The report was written by Dipl.-Ing. Isabella Kossina and Dr. Barbara Zeschmar-Lahl.
On 14 August 2019, Henning Friege, Beate Kummer, Klaus-Günter Steinhäuser, Joachim Wuttke and Barbara Zeschmar-Lahl published their contribution on the question of the interfaces between chemicals, product and waste legislation at Environmental Science Europe.
How should we deal with the interfaces between chemicals, product and waste legislation? Environmental Sciences Europe volume 31, Article number: 51 (2019). Online:
In its 7th Environmental Programme, the European Commission is, among other things, pursuing key objectives in the handling of substances and materials known under the keywords “non-toxic environment” and “circular economy”. These target areas have numerous interfaces in waste, chemicals and product legislation. Conflicts of objectives can arise, for example, with regard to the classification of waste in analogy to chemicals and at the border between waste and secondary raw materials that are processed into products. Based on questions and practical experience, we investigate how these conflicts of objectives can be defused or solved. In our opinion, it is necessary to provide waste management actors with much more information than before about the composition of used products; this should not only include hazardous substances, but also interfering and value-adding materials in general. Disposal routes as well as the entire handling of waste are largely based on risk considerations in waste management – a one-to-one transfer of hazard-related classifications from the chemicals and products sector to waste management would be counterproductive for achieving the Commission’s objectives. In the case of contaminated secondary raw materials, their entry into products can be justified in individual cases; however, this requires a risk assessment that includes in particular physico-chemical factors, utility models and controllable recycling routes. For plastics in particular, new Europe-wide End-of-Waste regulations are necessary. Internationally recognized variety lists of used plastics are an important condition for a significant increase in their recycling.
Henning Friege, Beate Kummer, Klaus-Günter Steinhäuser, Joachim Wuttke und Barbara Zeschmar-Lahl: Umgang mit Schnittstellen zwischen Chemikalien-, Produkt- und Abfallrecht. AbfallR 2, 66-82, 2019 (in German)