Sustainability: DuPont Market-Driven Science Addresses Global Trends
At an investors’ conference in New York last week, DuPont Chairman and CEO Chad Holliday said the company is delivering productivity improvements, increasing returns from new products based on DuPont innovation, and aligning its science with growth opportunities driven by global mega trends related to food, energy and security.
“DuPont is right on track and our future is bright,” Chad said at the Sanford Bernstein Strategic Decisions Conference. “We’re executing our strategies to achieve near-term profitability, while simultaneously tackling global challenges that we regard as opportunities for DuPont’s market-driven science to deliver sustainable solutions.”
Chad noted that global population growth is the common denominator driving both needs and demand in the areas of food production, energy and security. According to the United Nations, the world’s human population has grown from about 2.5 billion in the mid-20th Century to more than 6.5 billion today, with projections rising to an estimated 9 billion people by 2050.
Food Production. To accommodate the rising demand for dietary protein by the world’s population between now and 2025, global food production will need to double on virtually the same amount of land currently in production, Chad said.
DuPont, one of the largest producers of corn seed in the world, is using biotechnology to develop insect-resistant hybrids to improve productivity, quality and yield and to accelerate breeding step changes and rate of genetic gain. “We have a rich pipeline of new products under development to enhance yield and nutrition through bio science,” Chad noted, referencing Rynaxypyr™ low-dosage insecticide, fungal resistant corn, Optimum™ GAT™ dual herbicide tolerance, healthier soybean oil and stress- tolerant crops.
Energy. As economies modernize in emerging markets, the demand for hydrocarbon resources is increasing dramatically, further contributing to climate change and other environmental impacts. “We need to rethink the way we source and use energy and work to minimize the amount of carbon we put into the atmosphere,” Chad said.
DuPont is anticipating increased demand for renewable energy sources and materials by developing products and technologies for photovoltaics, biofuels such as biobutanol and cellulosic ethanol, and bio-based materials such as DuPont™ Sorona® polymers for apparel and carpet. Energy efficiency is being provided through materials that conserve energy such as DuPont™ Tyvek® ThermaWrap™ and next-generation high performance insulation.
Safety and Security. The company’s long experience and expertise in safety have resulted in a broad offering of products and services that address the basic need for people to feel safe and secure at home, at work and at play. These include high-performance materials such as DuPont™ Kevlar® and Nomex® apparel; clean and disinfect solutions such as biosecurity kits, RelyOn™ and Virkon® wipes and sprays; Tyvek® contamination and control suits; and building innovations such as shatter-resistant SentryGlas® Plus.
Chad Holliday“Science has the potential to help feed the world, address global energy challenges, and provide safer and more secure lives for people everywhere,” Chad said. “DuPont will continue to pursue science-based solutions that meet customer and market needs while providing value for our shareholders and society in general. We’re excited about the near-term opportunities and those that lie further ahead.”
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