The Swiss Resources Revolution has Begun

Kurt Lanz, economiesuisse

Dubendorf, 7 December 2016 The first Swiss Resources Forum held last week has revealed an overwhelming interest in raw materials and resources management and technologies. Participants from Swiss industry discussed with Swiss policymakers and researchers how to secure the supply of critical metals and other resources needed for renewable energy and energy-efficient technologies, innovation and economic growth. Future resource-efficiency strategies should also contribute to sustainability and human development in developing countries.It was stated that Switzerland not only needs an Energy Revolution (away from fossil fuels) but also a Resource Revolution.

swiss resources forum
Peter Wäber, bluesign technologies ag

Matthias Bölke, swisscleantech-president and CEO of Schneider Electric und Feller AG estimated that resource efficiency has to increase with a factor 3 in order to keep global temperature rise below the 2 degrees Celsius. “Enormous potential can be achieved in particular in the building and construction sectors”. Gunther Stephan, president, Swiss National Sustainability Research Program (NFP 73), emphasised the importance of a permanent exchange of knowledge between researchers and decision-makers in industry and governments. Other speakers included Kurt Lanz, economiesuisse, Peter Waeber (bluesign technologies AG), Karine Siegwart (BAFU), Brigitte Buchmann (Empa) and Patrik Geisselhardt (Swiss Recycling). The panel discussion was moderated by Barbara Dubach, engageability.

The multistakeholder conference, organised by the World Resources Forum with a wide range of Swiss partners, was held at Empa Headquarters in Dubendorf, near Zurich, and brought over 100 participants together. A work visit to the NEST modular research and innovation building of Empa and Eawag was included in the program. In the NEST new technologies, materials and systems are tested, researched, and validated in realistic conditions.

A full report reflecting the plenary discussions,as well as outcomes of the various workshops of the Swiss Resources Forum will be published in the weeks to come.

swiss resources forum
Barbara Dubach, engageability

The conference was broadcasted live on the social media. A Photo Gallery and some videos have been posted on our Facebook Photo Gallery. The lunch was climate neutral due to a cooperation with The Netherlands was the first “guest country”, emphasizing the potential of good cooperation between Swiss and Dutch companies in resource-efficient solutions. 

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