Novozymes at Rio+20: Not science fiction, but science fact 

Today marks the start of “Rio+20”, the largest conference in the history of the United Nations. Twenty years ago, business was considered part of the sustainability problem. Now Novozymes and other companies are seen as part of the solution.

13. June 2012
​Today marks the start of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, or “Rio+20”, a global-scale event attracting 70,000 participants, including heads of states and governments, businesses, NGOs, media and other groups. Regardless of its uncertain political outcome, Rio+20 is expected to give new direction to the issues that will shape and drive the global sustainability agenda in the future. Many of the key issues to be discussed at Rio+20, for example renewable energy, and sustainable consumption and production, are areas where Novozymes’s technology can provide sustainable, scalable solutions today.

Novozymes is at Rio to show the world that better and more sustainable ways exist to support modern lifestyles, from the food we eat to the clothes we wear to the water we use to the cars we drive. And the technology behind these solutions is available now.

“The bold vision of a biobased economy isn’t science fiction, it’s science fact,” says Thomas Nagy, Novozymes Executive Vice President, who is leading the company’s delegation to Rio. “Novozymes, and companies like it, are already involved in innovative cross-sector collaborations to address the complex challenges around sustainable development that are being discussed.”

Novozymes offers many solutions in sustainable industry and agriculture that are available today, in the areas of biofuels, plastics, agriculture, food, feed, textiles and more. This includes projects in the least developed economies, best exemplified by Novozymes’ engagement in the CleanStar Mozambique partnership.

Novozymes’ participation at Rio
Novozymes will be participating in Rio with over 120 activities planned over the next 10 days, including keynote speeches at the following high-level events:
• International Chamber of Commerce’s Creativity4Innovation – today
• U.N. Global Compact Corporate Sustainability Forum – 15-18 June
• Brazilian Government Sustainable Energy For All – 18 June
• Business Action for Sustainable Development Business Day 2012 – 19 June (BASD is the main business voice into the Rio+20 process)

Success at Rio
For Novozymes, success at Rio won’t be necessarily defined by the political outcome document, although Novozymes would warmly welcome a text that helps provide global framework conditions for business to take sustainable development to the next level. This could include support for increased use of sustainable energy such as biofuels, and the reduction of fossil fuel subsidies, for example.

“Because the political outcome at Rio+20 is uncertain, it’s important for companies like Novozymes to be upbeat and practical about how sustainability issues can move forward,” explains Nagy. “We know that partnerships within and beyond the private sector will be key to any outcomes at Rio, so our activities at the conference will be about building relationships that can create a more sustainable world, one project at a time. In the end, we’re all here to get smarter as fast as possible in the way we actually use the world’s resources, and show that greening business makes as much economic sense as it does environmental.”

Read more about Rio+20 conference