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bioplastics daily news
  • Danimer Scientific and Nestlé partner on the development of biodegradable bottle

    18.01.2019

    Nestlé and Danimer Scientific, a leading developer and manufacturer of biodegradable plastic products, have announced a global partnership to develop biodegradable bottles.

    aNestlé and Danimer Scientific will collaborate to design and manufacture bio-based resins for Nestlé’s water business using Danimer Scientific’s PHA polymer Nodax™. In 2018, the University of Georgia (U.S.A.) confirmed in a study that Nodax is an effective biodegradable alternative to petrochemical plastics. PepsiCo, an existing partner of Danimer, may also gain access to the resins developed under this collaboration.


    "Researchers have shown that PHA biodegrades in a wide range of environments, including industrial and home compost, soil, fresh and sea water," said Stephen Croskrey, CEO of Danimer Scientific. "As a material that is reliably biodegradable across both aerobic and anaerobic conditions, our Nodax PHA is an ideal fit to drive the creation of eco-friendly packaging for Nestlé’s products. Nodax PHA is suitable feedstock for industrial compost, home compost, and anaerobic digester facilities as well as reuse through recycling. We look forward to supporting Nestlé in the years to come.”
    In 2018, Nestlé announced its commitment to make 100% of its packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025. To achieve this goal, the company has already undertaken several initiatives including the creation of the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences. This institute is dedicated to the discovery and development of functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions including functional paper and biodegradable materials.


    Stefan Palzer, Chief Technology Officer for Nestlé said, "Strategic innovation partnerships play a key role for Nestlé as we make progress in improving the sustainability of our packaging. In order to effectively address the plastic issue in various markets, we need a wide range of technological solutions, including new paper materials and biodegradable polymers which can also be recycled."
    Maurizio Patarnello, CEO of Nestlé Waters said, "Nestlé Waters is committed to addressing the growing global plastic waste packaging issue. A biodegradable bottle, which is also recyclable, can help improve the environmental impact of our business in countries without collection and recycling systems."


    http://www.DanimerScientific.com

  • Global corporations join newly launched Alliance to End Plastic Waste

    17.01.2019

    An alliance of global companies from the plastics and consumer goods value chain today launched a new organization to advance solutions to eliminate plastic waste in the environment, especially in the ocean.

    The cross-value chain Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), currently made up of nearly thirty member companies, has committed over $1.0 billion with the goal of investing $1.5 billion over the next five years to help end plastic waste in the environment. The Alliance will develop and bring to scale solutions that will minimize and manage plastic waste and promote solutions for used plastics by helping to enable a circular economy. The Alliance membership represents global companies and located throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, Southeast Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

    s

    "Everyone agrees that plastic waste does not belong in our oceans or anywhere in the environment. This is a complex and serious global challenge that calls for swift action and strong leadership. This new alliance is the most comprehensive effort to date to end plastic waste in the environment," said David Taylor, Chairman of the Board, President and CEO of Procter & Gamble, and chairman of the AEPW. "I urge all companies, big and small and from all regions and sectors, to join us," he added.

    "History has shown us that collective action and partnerships between industry, governments and NGOs can deliver innovative solutions to a global challenge like this," said Bob Patel, CEO of LyondellBasell, and a vice chairman of the AEPW. "The issue of plastic waste is seen and felt all over the world. It must be addressed and we believe the time for action is now."

    The Alliance is a not-for-profit organization that includes companies that make, use, sell, process, acollect, and recycle plastics. This includes chemical and plastic manufacturers, consumer goods companies, retailers, converters, and waste management companies, also known as the plastics value chain. The Alliance has been working with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development as a founding strategic partner. The Alliance today also announced an initial set of projects and collaborations that reflect a range of solutions to help end plastic waste:

    • Partnering with cities to design integrated waste management systems in large urban areas where infrastructure is lacking, especially those along rivers which transport vast amounts of unmanaged plastic waste from land to the ocean. This work will include engaging local governments and stakeholders, as well as generating economically sustainable and replicable models that can be applied across multiple cities and regions. The Alliance will pursue partnerships with cities located in high plastic leakage areas. The Alliance will also be looking to collaborate with other programs working with cities, such as Project STOP, which is working in Indonesia.
    • Funding The Incubator Network by Circulate Capital to develop and promote technologies, business models and entrepreneurs that prevent ocean plastic waste and improve waste management and recycling, with the intention of creating a pipeline of projects for investment, with an initial focus on Southeast Asia.
    • Developing an open source, science-based global information project to support waste management projects globally with reliable data collection, metrics, standards, and methodologies to help governments, companies, and investors focus on and accelerate actions to stop plastic waste from entering the environment. The Alliance will explore opportunities to partner with leading academic institutions and other organizations already involved in similar types of data collection.
    • Creating a capacity building collaboration with intergovernmental organizations such as the United Nations to conduct joint workshops and trainings for government officials and community-based leaders to help them identify and pursue the most effective and locally-relevant solutions in the highest priority areas.
    • Supporting Renew Oceans to aid localized investment and engagement. The program is designed to capture plastic waste before it reaches the ocean from the ten major rivers shown to carry the vast majority of land-based waste to the ocean. The initial work will support the Renew Ganga project, which has also received support from the National Geographic Society.


    In the months ahead, the Alliance will make additional investments and drive progress in four key areas:

    • Infrastructure development to collect and manage waste and increase recycling;
    • Innovation to advance and scale new technologies that make recycling and recovering plastics easier and create value from all post-use plastics;
    • Education and engagement of governments, businesses, and communities to mobilize action; and
    • Clean-up of concentrated areas of plastic waste already in the environment, particularly the major conduits of waste, like rivers, that carry land-based plastic waste to the sea.


    "Success will require collaboration and coordinated efforts across many sectors – some that create near-term progress and others that require major investments with longer timelines. Addressing plastic waste in the environment and developing a circular economy of plastics requires the participation of everyone across the entire value chain and the long term commitment of businesses, governments, and communities. No one country, company or community can solve this on their own," said Veolia CEO Antoine Frérot, a vice chairman of the AEPW.

    Research from the Ocean Conservancy shows that nearly 80 percent of plastic waste in the ocean begins as litter on land, the vast majority of which travels to the sea by rivers. In fact, one study estimates that over 90 percent of river-borne plastic in the ocean comes from 10 major rivers around the world – eight in Asia, and two in Africa. Sixty percent of plastic waste in the ocean can be traced to five countries in Southeast Asia.

    "While our effort will be global, the Alliance can have the greatest impact on the problem by focusing on the parts of the world where the challenge is greatest; and by sharing solutions and best practices so that these efforts can be amplified and scaled-up around the world," said Peter Bakker, President and CEO of World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

    The following companies are the founding members of the Alliance: BASF, Berry Global, Braskem, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC, Clariant, Covestro, Dow, DSM, ExxonMobil, Formosa Plastics Corporation USA, Henkel, LyondellBasell, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings, Mitsui Chemicals, NOVA Chemicals, OxyChem, PolyOne, Procter & Gamble, Reliance Industries, SABIC, Sasol, SUEZ, Shell, SCG Chemicals, Sumitomo Chemical, Total, Veolia, and Versalis (Eni).

    http://www.endplasticwaste.org.

  • How natural do we want it....?

    16.01.2019

    A promising bioplastic derived from indole, a molecule found in feces, is currently under development that performs better and is more durable than both regular plastic and other bioplastics – and is potentially better suited for recycling.

    aAlmost all plastic is made from crude oil, and plastic production currently accounts for 4-6% of global oil consumption. The development of renewable bioplastics is progressing, but relatively few are actually being used.
    A strong candidate among bioplastics is polyethylene furanoate (PEF). Instead of oil, PEF contains the hydrocarbon, furan, which can be extracted from maize, wood and certain types of grain. The main market for PEF is packaging. Experiments have shown that PEF is superior to standard polyethylene terephthalate (PET) in protecting against oxygen, carbon dioxide and water, which gives products enclosed in plastic greater durability.

    The success of PEF made researchers at Sweden’s Lund University interested in other renewable materials that could potentially be used for plastic production. Chemical engineering doctoral student Ping Wang has produced a plastic based on indole, a heavier hydrocarbon molecule than furan, that is present in human faeces and smells accordingly. The compound is also found in lower concentrations in certain flowering plants and has a more agreeable aroma. This effect is due to our sense of smell decoding the aroma differently depending on the amount and combination.

    The research team is thought to be the only one researching indole polyesters, and their results are promising. A regular PET bottle’s glass-liquid transition temperature – when the material softens and deforms – is 70 degrees. The most successful PEF experiments withstand about 86 degrees. However, one of Ping Wang’s indole plastics is stable up to 99 degrees.

    “These are preliminary results, but we have seen that polyester plastic has better mechanical properties, which makes it more sustainable. This can lead to better recycling in the future. At present, PET bottles can only be recycled once, then they must be used for something else such as textiles”, said associate professor Baozhong Zhang, who is supervising the research team.

    Currently, indole is only produced on a small scale and used mainly in perfumes and drugs. It may be possible to use bioengineering methods to produce indole from sugar through fermentation. However, such a process would first need to be analysed more thoroughly before the production cost can be calculated.

    Ping Wang is continuing her research by examining the indole plastic’s potential in other application areas.

    “We obtained good results, but are not satisfied. Now we are trying to find methods for making higher quality indole polymers that can be used in more ways, not just for plastic bottles”, she concluded.

    Publication: Indole as a new sustainable aromatic unit for high quality biopolyesters

    https://rsc.li/2D9xpTQ

    Image: Ping Wang

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