Green Practices

Plastic sponge soaks up carbon dioxide, but don't trees do it better?

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: August 19th, 2014

Last week at the 248th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, a report presented by Andrew Cooper, PhD, from the University of Liverpool, introduced a sponge-like plastic that sops up carbon dioxide (CO2), the greenhouse gas that everyone loves to hate.

Cardia Bioplastics sets up shop in Brazil

By Karen Laird
Published: August 12th, 2014

Strong market demand for its sustainable retail carry bags has led Australian bioplastics manufacturer Cardia Bioplastics Limited to set up its own film and bag manufacturing plant in São Paulo, Brazil. New purpose-built facilities have been leased and production commencement is scheduled for September 2014. The production machinery costing AUD 750,000 (USD 695,000) is funded using vendor finance over a 12-month period.

Sony to market proprietary recycled plastic material to third parties

By Karen Laird
Published: August 10th, 2014

When Sony resolved to do something about reducing the amount of virgin, oil-based plastics it used to manufacture its products, it soon became apparent that the company was not one for half measures. Next to reducing the amount of plastic used and introducing recycled plastic in new products, Sony decided to develop its own recycled plastic. The result was SoRPlas: Sustainable Oriented Recycled Plastic.

Originally made by Sony for Sony, the material has proved such a success that the company has now decided to sell it to external parties.

Making the case for waste-to-energy

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: August 8th, 2014

For the past two decades, I've heard numerous plastics industry scientists and engineers make the case for burning trash - specifically the "trash" that contains extremely BTU value. But instead of getting the real value out of post-consumer plastics through waste-to-energy (WTE), we spend a tremendous amount of energy (most of it coming from fossil fuels) to recycle plastics, paper, glass and other commodities. The U.S. is behind the times on this issue.

FKuR closes distribution agreement with Clariant for North America

By Karen Laird
Published: August 6th, 2014

Global specialty chemicals leader Clariant and bioplastics specialist FKuR have announced that they have entered into a distribution agreement with immediate effect. Under the agreement, Clariant Masterbatches will market, sell and distribute FKuR's full line of biodegradable and bio-based products in North America, a product portfolio comprising FKuR's Bio-Flex PLA blends, Biograde, cellulose blends, Fibrolon, woodfiber reinforced compounds, Terralene compounds based on I'm Green PE and and Terramid compounds based on Vestamid Terra polyamides.

Nanocomposites in a nutshell

By Karen Laird
Published: August 4th, 2014

Biocomposites and nanotechnology are two areas drawing attention today from researchers and the industry alike. In Iran, researchers from, among others, Isfahan University of Technology have combined the two to produce a new kind of nanocomposite, based on pistachio shell, an agro-waste that has high tensile strength. 
The wood-plastic nanocomposite can be used in the building industry, and it is resistant to humidity, loss of color and various types of fungi and insects.

New EPS recycling facility opens in Indianapolis

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: August 4th, 2014

Plastic Recycling Inc. (PRI) has opened a new recycling facility in Indianapolis, IN dedicated to the recycling of post-consumer foam cups, foam take-out containers and other used polystyrene materials collected through curbside pick-up programs across the country.

Say cheese? New whey-based thermoformable barrier coating under development

By Karen Laird
Published: July 31st, 2014

As far as growth is concerned, the packaging industry has nothing to worry about. Sustainability, however, is another story. And while the need for greener packaging represents a significant market opportunity, solutions that deliver the requisite performance at a competitive price are still thin on the ground.

A dominant technology in the packaging market is thermoforming, yet although, for example, bio-based trays have been around for a number of years, in general, they fail to meet the barrier properties required for sensitive food products.

DOE announces funding for biomass-based carbon fiber development

By Stephen Moore
Published: July 30th, 2014

The US Energy Department (DOE; Washington, DC) has announced up to $11.3 million in funding for two projects that aim to advance the production of cost-competitive, high-performance carbon fiber material from renewable, non-food-based feedstocks, such as agricultural residues and woody biomass.

Meredian Inc. and DaniMer Scientific merge under Meredian Holdings Group Inc.

By Karen Laird
Published: July 24th, 2014

Leading PHA producer Meredian Inc. and DaniMer Scientific, an international corporation focusing on the development of sustainably produced, renewable and biodegradable resources, have announced that they have merged under Meredian Holdings Group Inc.

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