MEP Spyraki chairs EuChemS Science Policy workshop on Phosphorus

Various applications of this critical material were discussed at this event, attended by experts from various backgrounds, and numerous international online participants.
Marton Kottmayer,

The morning session of the workshop was held in the European Parliament in Brussels. The event was chaired MEP Maria Spyraki, alongside Scientific Chair Evamarie Hey-Hawkins. Introduction speeches were also made by EuChemS President Floris Rutjes and Senior Policy Advisor to MEP Spyraki, Christos Vasilakos. Policy Advisor Vasilakos and MEP Spyraki’s focus were parliamentary priorities with regards to chemical regulations, such as the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) act’s report, the rapporteur for which is MEP Spyraki. From the academic perspective, Nicola Armaroli provided context for the workshop by introducing the EuChemS Element Scarcity Periodic Table, and Alessandra Quadrelli expanded upon the role of Phosphorus in in the planetary boundary framework. Returning to policy, European Sustainable Phosphorus Platform (ESPP) President Robert van Spingelen highlighted the critical/strategic raw material nature of Phosphorus, and its policy implications. For the afternoon session, speakers relocated to EuChemS Premises, as well as joined online from all across the globe. Dana Cordell from Sydney explained the sustainability and food security challenges in relation to the element, while Chris Lawson elaborated on the concept of “Peak Phosphate” from an industry perspective. Chris Slootweg discussed the CHNOPS elements of life, prioritising phosphorus, Andreas Rak introduced an innovative process of phosphoric acid production from REMONDIS Aqua, and last but not least Jan G Weigand discussed sustainable phosphorus chemistry.

After the talks of each session, engaging panel discussions were held, attended, in addition to the speakers and chairs, by Willem Schipper from SusPhos and bestselling author Dan Egan. The varied, international online audience was also part of these vivid conversations held in the morning and in the afternoon as well, as participants aimed to address the many questions of remote attendees. The recording of the event and panel discussions will soon be available on the EuChemS Youtube channel.

The workshop was part of the series of science-policy events organised in relation to the EuChemS Element Scarcity Periodic Table. The EuChemS Periodic table aims to illustrate how limited natural elements are, and the implications their societal use may carry. The elements of carbon, lithium and nitrogen were investigated in previous workshops. As the EuChemS Periodic Table is a living document, these workshops serve as an opportunity on keeping it up to date, as demonstrated by the most recent update, which was a result of the conversation that took place during the Lithium workshop.

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