William F. Feehery, president of DuPont Industrial Biosciences (IB), will take part in a panel discussion on “Technology – Trends and Triumphs,” at the 2017 Sustainability Summit, hosted by The Economist in London on March 23-24. Alongside his fellow panelists, Feehery will address how DuPont is using biotechnology to provide its customers with more sustainable choices.
Feehery joined DuPont Industrial Biosciences in November 2013, where he leads a global team of over 2,500 scientists and engineers. The IB business is dedicated to making products and industrial processes more efficient, cost-effective and sustainable, through a unique combination of biotechnology, chemistry and material science. Key to the business is its ability to turn cutting-edge scientific innovation into impactful commercial products – creating sustainable solutions for customers that offer better performance on an industrial scale.
- As president of DuPont Industrial Biosciences, I am proud to lead a team of people who are catalysts for changing the status quo -said Feehery.
- I look forward to discussing the pioneering technologies we are developing in industries as varied as biofuels, animal nutrition and industrial enzymes with other leaders at the Summit who share our goal of developing technology to engineer a more sustainable future.
Feehery has established himself as a prominent leader in the bioeconomy, ranked by Biofuels Digest as one of its top ten voices in 2016. He also recently accepted the Platts Global Energy “Breakthrough Solution of the Year,” award on behalf of DuPont and Archer Daniels Midland. The award honored the two companies’ efforts to build a breakthrough platform technology to produce a biobased monomer. This chemical building block has the potential to expand the materials landscape in the 21st Century to create truly novel, high-performance materials from renewable sources. One biomaterial that will be produced from the monomer is PTF, which has superior barrier properties and will be used in the bottling industry to lightweight bottles. This kind of innovation is central to DuPont IB’s approach: by developing this renewably sourced monomer, the beverage industry will be able to cut down on shipping weight on a considerable scale, resulting in significant impacts for customers and the environment.
DuPont IB also will soon be producing cellulosic ethanol from its biorefinery in central Iowa. The facility uses corn stover – the stalks, leaves and cobs left over in a field after harvest – as the feedstock to make an advanced biofuel that offers 90 percent fewer GHG emissions than petroleum-based fuel.
One other area where DuPont IB contributes substantially is in the realm of helping industries bring about fundamental change with cleaner manufacturing processes. Biobased solutions are helping various businesses replace harsher chemical treatments with alternatives derived from nature. In animal nutrition, our phytase enzymes help animals digest feed more efficiently to reduce phosphorous pollution from animal waste. In textile processing, we help customers reduce the use of peroxides and chlorines with amylase enzymes to desize and depill fabrics. And in the semi-conductor industry, DuPont’s catalase enzymes are cleaning up waste streams by transforming residual hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water.
William F. Feehery, president of DuPont Industrial Biosciences at 2017 Sustainability Summit