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05 | 2010

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News Procter&Gamble to

News Procter&Gamble to Use Bio-PE Brazilian petrochemical company Braskem will supply its sugarcane ethanol-based polyethylene (PE) to multinational consumer products company Procter & Gamble‘s (P&G) cosmetics lines Pantene Pro V ® , Max Factor ® and Cover Girl ® packaging. P&G already uses Braskem‘s oil-based PE, but negotiations on ‘green’ PE supply began when the Brazilian firm started the biopolymer project, approximately three years ago, Braskem‘s polymers business VP Rui Chammas told journalists during an event in Sao Paulo. Braskem started producing the green resin this month at the Triunfo petrochemical hub, in Rio Grande do Sul state (see next page). Gisele Bündchen presenting Panthene in bio-PE (Photo: Agencia Fotosite) The first P&G product line to use the sugarcane ethanol resin is Pantene, and packaging made with the biopolymer will be available from 2011, according to P&G corporate affairs director in Brazil, Gabriela Onofre. P&G plans to expand the use of the ‘green’ PE beyond to other items, Gabriela said. Chammas added that most of the plant‘s production has already been negotiated with approximately 20 Brazilian and foreign companies, from which 10 were not publicly disclosed. “More than two-thirds of the production will be exported,“ Chammas said. “P&G‘s commitment to use renewable bio-derived plastic in its global beauty and grooming product packaging is an important step forward in its efforts to improve the environmental profile of its products,“ said Dr. Jason Clay, Senior Vice President of Market Transformation of World Wildlife Fund, U.S. “We applaud this announcement as part of their leadership in finding innovative solutions to the sustainability challenges facing the world today.“ “This innovation is truly consumer-driven. As we talk with women around the world, they tell us that they want to make themselves more beautiful without making their environment less beautiful,‘‘ said Gina Drosos, Group President, Global P&G Beauty. “With this new packaging innovation, women can have confidence that their favorite brands are helping to make a difference.“ “Using sugarcane-derived plastic represents another step in P&G‘s commitment to environmental sustainability and the development of sustainable innovation products,“ said Len Sauers , P&G Vice President, Global Sustainability. “P&G is making significant progress in environmental sustainability through our work with external partners. Together, we are working on creative solutions that deliver science-based sustainable innovations.“ MT Award for Biobased Polymer Stefanie Kind, PhD student at the Institute of Biochemical Engineering of the Technische Universität Braunschweig, was awarded with the prestigious ‘Young Metabolic Engineer Award’ During the Metabolic Engineering Conference in Jeju, South Korea, an international jury selected five most excellent papers out of 200, among these the work by Stefanie Kind. In a ‘best of the best’ competition with short presentations she stood up to top-class competitors from the USA and Asia. Stefanie Kind, graduated in biology, received the award for systems wide metabolic engineering of the soil bacterium Corynebacterium glutamicum into a tailor-made cell factory for production of diaminopentane as building block for the innovative bio-polyamide PA5.10. The ‘2010 Young Metabolic Engineer Award’ recognizes her research, supervised by Prof. Dr. Christoph Wittmann, as groundbreaking model project towards a bio-based economy for the production of chemicals, materials and fuels. Her work is part of a joint collaboration of the Institute of Biochemical Engineering with an industrial consortium including BASF SE, Daimler AG, Fischerwerke GmbH and Robert-Bosch GmbH. The project supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research within the initiative BioIndustry21. Stefanie Kind is further sponsored by the Max-Buchner Foundation of the German Society for Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology (DECHEMA). Sources: Bnamericans [2010-08-13] PRNewswire via COMTEX [2010-08-12] bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/10] Vol. 5

Braskem Inaugurated Green Ethylene Plant On September 24, in the Triunfo Petrochemical Complex (Triunfo, Brazil), Braskem inaugurated, the world’s largest ethylene-from-ethanol plant, permitting the production of 200,000 tons of green polyethylene per year. As a result, the company will be providing the world with resin made from renewable sources, and taking another step towards its goal of becoming the world leader in sustainable chemistry with diversified and competitive raw material sources. The project, which absorbed investments of almost R0 million, was based on the company’s own technology. “The completion of this project is a landmark for Braskem, the realization of a dream shared with our clients, who can now acquire an even more sustainable product,” declared the company’s CEO, Bernardo Gradin. Braskem’s ‘Green plastics’ are exceptionally eco-friendly, since the process used to produce each ton of polyethylene from the primary raw material removes 2.5 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. “Braskem’s green plastics are made from CO2 sequestered from the atmosphere through sugarcane photosynthesis. It is also the most competitive of all plastics made from renewable sources. And this has been widely acknowledged by the market, which recorded demand three times greater than the plant’s capacity,” added Gradin. Construction of the green ethylene plant was concluded 16 months ahead of schedule, under budget and with no accidents resulting in workers having to take time off. Due to its extreme importance, Braskem challenged its team to complete the project as rapidly as possible and with the highest safety standards. More than 2,200 workers were involved in the construction, more than 700 of whom living in Triunfo and the vicinity. Of this total, 174 had completed the Programa Acreditar (Believing Program), which had provided almost 250 Triunfo residents with eight months of training in electrics, structural assembly, plumbing, carpentry and welding. Ethylene specification took place 12 hours after the plant’s start-up, on September 3, and green polyethylene production began a week later. The polymerization process, which converts ethylene into resin, is carried out in Braskem’s existing plants in the Triunfo Complex. The final product has the same properties and characteristics as conventional polyethylene and can be processed by clients’ equipment without the need for any adjustments. Braskem is also considering implementing a new green ethylene unit, due to market interest. “Investments in polymers have underlined Braskem’s confidence in the country’s growth and its potential for leading the development of products made from renewable sources, thanks to its competitive advantages,” Gradin concluded.

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