Chemical Leasing Toolkit

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Task 6: Collect data and define the baseline

This task involves gathering all relevant data to describe the current situation in the selected process (e.g. one of the production lines) before implementation of Chemical Leasing. The data are needed to establish a baseline that is used to evaluate the results: the costs and benefits of implementing Chemical Leasing, over a given period of time.

In gathering the data, the Chemical Leasing team should be aware that:

  • Many of the data are typically already available, so the team should first collect data that already exist. If important data are missing, the team should define an approach to collect it (measure or calculate or assume).
  • The data should be documented properly.
  • The company should use consistent methods to measure and calculate data collected over the period in order to make them comparable.
  • The results of previously tested process modifications and chemical alternatives should be taken into account.
  • Ideas for improvement are often generated during the systematic elaboration of data. These ideas (which are mainly addressed in Task 7) should be documented and discussed within the team.

To establish a baseline it is necessary to define indicators relevant to the selected process. The indicators should be specific, measurable, available/achievable in a cost effective way, relevant, and time-related (SMART), and they should be the same as the indicators used in monitoring and evaluation (task 10) 

Information about indicators can be found here

Table 3.  Examples of indicators for target processes

Economic indicators Environmental indicators Health and safety indicators
Costs for materials, energy, water, waste-water treatment, waste management, etc. Input:
Chemical consumption
Water consumption
Energy consumption
Waste water generation
Waste generation
Air emissions
Pollution intensity
Accidents related to the handling of chemicals Adverse health effects in workers from chemical exposure

Table 4.  Example of baseline data collection for a specific industrial process: lubrication of the PET bottle packaging conveyor.

To ensure the smooth movement of bottles during packaging, the conveyor belt has to be lubricated. The current process uses a lubricant dissolved in water.

Input Unit in l, m3, kg, etc./year Comments
  • Type
  • Hazard: medium, low or non-hazardous
  • Volume per year
  e.g.: The idea is to change to a dry lubricant that does not need water
Sodium hypochlorite
  • Hazardous chemical
volume per year  
Water for the lubricant m3 per year  
Chemicals for waste water treatment volume per year  
Energy   Not relevant for this case
Output Unit in l, m3, kg, etc./year  
Waste-water m3 per year  
Waste Packaging waste for the lubricant number of packages  
Economic data Unit in €, $, local currency/year  
Costs for lubricant Euro (or other currency) per year  
Costs for sodium hypochlorite Euro (or other currency) per year  
Costs for water Euro (or other currency) per year  
Costs for waste water treatment chemicals Euro (or other currency) per year  
Costs for energy   Not relevant for this case
Costs for waste water treatment Euro per year  
Costs for waste disposal/treatment Euro per year Not relevant for this case
Social data Unit  
Number of jobs in the process Nr of people working on the line per shift  
Working conditions: Aerosols in the air – risk of worker exposure Slippery floor – risk of injuries Lubricant is manually applied – risk of worker exposure    

The baseline data is the starting point for development of the Chemical Leasing and any subsequent monitoring and evaluation.


When you have defined the baseline for the process, continue with Task 7 – Define measures to optimize chemical use and processes