On May 22, 2015, the California State Assembly passed the Plastic Microbeads Nuisance Prevention Law, a bill designed to ban the use of microbeads in beauty products and prevent the environment harm that occurs when they inevitably end up in waterways. California is not the first state to restrict microbeads as Illinois, Maine, New Jersey, and Colorado have also done so and several other states are in the process of creating bans. The big difference with this legislation is that California is the first state to ban petroleum-based plastic microbeads as well as biodegradable biobased microbeads. Critics of the biobased exception state that there is not enough research into how the biobased beads degrade under different conditions, and state that the bioplastics may still absorb toxic chemicals and introduce them to the food chain. The bill has been moved to the California senate and referred to the Committees on Environmental Quality and Judiciary.
Project focuses on value-added product recovery, zero-waste wastewater technologies
As sustainability and water scarcity continue to be key issues for water managers worldwide, it’s more and more critical to find new solutions and technologies. Check out the laser cutter which is a great new technology invention. Wastewater is a particularly abundant and potentially useful resource. In fact, teams of European researchers are working to harvest energy and recover resources from wastewater streams.Water resource management is particularly critical throughout Europe as climate change,...
Biobased Economy opportunities for North-Netherlands
The three Northern provinces of the Netherlands could join forces to become a major producer and supplier of renewable resources for the regional production of ‘green’ chemicals, plastics and animal feed. This is one of the conclusions from research carried out by Wageningen University & Research, Greenlincs and the University of Groningen. Close collaboration with the German Weser-Ems area could boost the supply of ‘home-grown’ biomass raw materials. This would enable the North-Netherla...
Industry Responds To Revised European Parliament Report On Waste Legislation
On June 9, 2016, European Bioplastics (EUBP) announced the support of a European Parliament (EP) report emphasizing the role of bioplastics in the creation of a circular bioeconomy. The report, produced by Italian MEP Simona Bonafè¨, outlines legislation that is needed to use waste more efficiently to create bio-based materials. Increasing the value of waste by promoting its use to create other bioproducts will help shift the linear bioeconomy to a circular, more efficient, bioeconomy. The report...
DOE Announces Funding For Two Next-Generation Biofuel Projects
On August 27, 2015, the Department of Energy (DOE) announced funding for two projects focused on the development of next-generation biofuels. Texas A&M University will receive up to $2.5 million to support its efforts in developing a single-unit process to convert lignin in the production of bioplastics, and Ohio University will receive up to $1.5 million for its work in developing a continuous flow electrochemical reactor that upgrades waste lignin to biobased phenol substitutes.
The search for sustainable plastics
As petroleum-based polymers foul our oceans and litter our lives, researchers seek more environmentally friendly ways to meet demand for durable, versatile materials. The fate of the world’s oceans may rest inside a stainless steel tank not quite the size of a small beer keg. Inside, genetically modified bacteria turn corn syrup into a churning mass of polymers that can be used to produce a wide variety of common plastics. “It’s a bit like making yogurt,” says Oliver Peoples, chief...