Green Chemistry in the Pharmaceutical Sector

As you might have seen in the end of my blog post from yesterday, I have discussed Green Chemistry, Design for the Environment, and other issues in the field of pharmaceuticals and the environment today. And I have had those discussions on a train running from Uppsala to Gothenburg. That was a new experience for me I have to admit. Fun, but slightly unstable. I should probably have worn a helmet to secure that I did not hurt myself if I would have fallen to the floor… But it went well!

Discussing sustainability

Discussing sustainability

My discussion partners were coming from a urology conference (”Urologidagarna”) in Uppsala and heading back home to Gothenburg. A pretty good thing I would say to combine the train trip with some green pharmaceutical discussions (at least in my view)!

I gave a general background to environmental issues in our sector, starting with one of my favourite slides: The Sustainable Quadrant that I have borrowed from Stina Billinger (Storebrand/SPP).

The Sustainable Quadrant

The Sustainable Quadrant

I then discussed both Access to Water issues as well as Climate Change and Energy matters before jumping into Pharmaceuticals in the Environment. We looked into both green design or Design for the Environment, i.e. how to design the active pharmaceutical ingridient to allow for low toxicity, no bio-accumulation potential, and easy degradability. I also gave example upon Green Chemistry perspectives on manufacturing operations, i.e. lowest possible use of raw materials, low toxicity of the solvents and materials used, and as small generation of waste as possible.

Green Chemistry

In the end of the presentation we discussed releases of pharmaceuticals susbstances from manufacturing facilities. Part of the discussion of course concerned Joakim Larsson’s results of releases in Hyderabad, India. In the discussion I talked about the ongoing discussions on green incentives in the pricing and reimbursement system as one tool to address those kind if issues. For more details on green incentives see the blog post from Sept 28 for instance.

It was really fun having these discussions on a shaky train to Gothenburg!

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