India’s leadership to strengthen IRSG
India has been elected Chairman of the International Rubber Study Group(IRSG) at a time when two of its prominent members —the US and Thailand — have left the organisation effective from July 1, 2011. India’s leadership role in the IRSG at this juncture is expected to strengthen the organisation which is the only common platform for NR and SR producers and consumers, as also the only comprehensive source of rubber statistics in the world. The IRSG members who unanimously elected India to head the organisation at a meeting in Singapore opined that India, being both a producer and a consumer of rubber, would be in a good position to protect the interests of both in the IRSG.
Sheela Thomas, Chairman of the Indian Rubber Board, will officiate as the Chairman of IRSG for the next two years. Incidentally, she is also the Chairman of ANRPC. The ANRPC Assembly held in Kochi in October 2010 elected India to head the organisation for the next two years. The fact that India now leads two major international rubber bodies is a tribute to the country’s growing clout in the global rubber industry.
World Rubber Summit to be a mega event: Meanwhile, a revised constitution for IRSG adopted at a recent meeting of the Heads of Delegations (HOD) of International Rubber Study Group(IRSG) seeks to change the structure of the organisation, its work pattern etc to make it more useful to the rubber industry stakeholders. The HOD decided to organise the World Rubber Summit as a mega event in Singapore during the next three years on an annual basis.
3 countries plan price stabilisation funds
The three major rubber producing countries — Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia -- are planning to set up national funds for price stabilisation in each country drawing on the allocation earmarked for rubber development, media reports say. A feasibility study is under way on organising the fund. The Ministerial Committee of the International Tripartite Rubber Council is expected to consider the study report in December 2011.
Evonik completes sale of carbon black unit
German chemical company Evonik Industries successfully completed the divestment of its carbon black activities on July 29, 2011. The sale of the business to the US-based Rhône Capital and Triton Partners is valued at over 900 million euros, the company says.
The European Commission had earlier cleared the proposed acquisition of Evonik’s carbon black business.
ARDL introduces new latex allergy tests
Akron Rubber Development Laboratory, Inc. (ARDL) has announced the expansion of its accredited tests for natural latex allergy product evaluation with the addition of the ASTM D 5712 and ASTM D 6499 standards.
The ASTM D 5712 is a chemically-based method for the determination of the total extractable protein content from rubber products. The ASTM D 6499 is an immunologically-based test method that specifically quantifies the level of Hevea proteins.
LANXESS joins global CSR initiative
Speciality chemicals company LANXESS has joined the world’s biggest and most rapidly growing initiative for corporate social responsibility (CSR) — the United Nations Global Compact. Axel C. Heitmann, Chairman of the Board of Management of LANXESS AG, said the company has already achieved its climate target for Germany by achieving substantial reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, one of the established principles of the CSR initiative.
LANXESS aims to deliver a 10 % reduction in specific CO2 emissions and specific energy consumption for each business segment by 2015. Moreover, emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are also to be cut by 30 % worldwide by 2015, he said.
ACS invites nominations for awards
The Rubber Division, American Chemical Society(ACS), is accepting nominations for the following six Science and Technology Awards for 2012: The Charles Goodyear Medal (sponsored by the Rubber Division), the Sparks-Thomas Award (sponsored by ExxonMobil Chemical Company), the Melvin Mooney Distinguished Technology Award (sponsored by Lion Copolymer), the George Stafford Whitby Award for Distinguished Teaching and Research (sponsored by Cabot Corporation), the Fernley H. Banbury Award (sponsored by the Farrel Company) and the Chemistry of Thermoplastic Elastomers Award (sponsored by the Ralph S. Graff Foundation).
The deadline for award nominations to be received at the Rubber Division is July 15, 2011. These prestigious awards recognize specific distinguished achievements of rubber scientists, engineers, chemists and technologists worldwide. For more details, contact the Rubber Division’s website, www.rubber.org.