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Issue 01/2019

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  • Renewable
  • Sustainable
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  • Biodegradable
  • Materials
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  • Plastics
  • Biobased
  • Bioplastics
Highlights: Automotive Foam Basics: Green public procurement Cover Story: PHB for food packaging

Basics Green public

Basics Green public procurement Green public procurement refers to the practice by public authorities of sourcing, where possible, goods, services or works with a reduced environmental impact. From central governments to municipalities, from universities to kindergartens, public purchasers across the board may opt (or in some countries, are required) to use their purchasing power to select biobased products, if these are available. In the past, bioplastics MAGAZINE has reported on the differences in approach in various countries. Here is a brief update on the green public procurement process in the USA compared to Germany. Example USA: The USDA BioPreferred Program For many years now, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) BioPreferred ® Program has aimed to increase the purchase and use of biobased products. Created by the 2002 Farm Bill, the Program’s purpose is to spur economic development, create new jobs and provide new markets for farm commodities. The increased development, purchase, and use of biobased products reduces the United States’ reliance on petroleum, increases the use of renewable agricultural resources, and contributes to reducing adverse environmental and health impacts. The BioPreferred Program has two major initiatives: mandatory federal purchasing and voluntary labeling. The mandatory federal purchasing initiative requires federal agencies to purchase biobased products in categories identified by the USDA. To date, USDA has identified 109 categories (including disposable serviceware, carpet, paints, insulation foams, composite panels, bedding etc.) of biobased products for which agencies and their contractors have purchasing requirements. The BioPreferred Program provides a catalog of products and resources to aid in meeting biobased purchasing requirements. The Voluntary Labeling Initiative is meant to support consumers who consider purchasing options with sustainable attributes. USDA wants to make it easy for those consumers to identify biobased products. The USDA Certified Biobased Product label, displayed on a product certified by USDA, is designed to provide useful information to consumers about the biobased content of the product. Example Germany Green public procurement is different in a country like Germany, which has no mandatory federal purchasing initiative such as described above. The German Agency for Renewable Resources (FNR), however, offers valuable support for the public sector in its efforts to increase environmentally friendly procurement. In 2016, bioplastics MAGAZINE reported on an initiative of the FNR called “the Biobased Office”, a special exhibit in the form of a 12m 2 trade fair booth that in that year toured through Germany. This year, the Biobased Office, featuring over 100 plant-based office products made from agricultural or forestry raw and residual materials, is once again on tour. The eco-friendly office design provides a complementary setting for the biobased office materials and supplies, all modeled on the originals and all easily, in quality and design, on a par with conventional, petroleum-based products. Some examples are bioplastic pens, erasers made of natural rubber, calculators made of bamboo and bioplastic, glue sticks inside/outside biobased, adhesive tape with solvent-free coating and many more. Schüco Facade FW 50+.SI Green (photo: Schuco International KG) The biobased Office (Source: FNR) 1: Contact pressure profile: partly biobased Polyamide 2: Glass rebate gaskets: partly biobased EPDM 40 bioplastics MAGAZINE [01/19] Vol. 14

Basics Public building & renovation with building materials from renewable raw materials Another important area for public procurement is the public building & renovation sector. The construction industry consumes 50 % of raw materials worldwide, while the construction and housing industries account for 33 % of global CO 2 emissions. For public construction to be sustainable, therefore, a holistic approach is required in which, in addition to investment costs, the long-term effects on the public budget, the environment and urban development are taken into account. For such an approach, however, expertise in sustainability is indispensable. Valuable contributions to this can be found in a new technical information brochure [1], recently published by FNR. In this 104-page booklet (available in the German language only) the FNR provides important insights into the procurement of sustainable building projects with environmentally friendly, biobased materials. The new technical information brochure contains information about the biobased building materials currently available in the market, feasible technical and environmentally friendly solutions and how these can be integrated into a public building tender. Best practice examples and sample formulations are particularly helpful in practice. Building materials made of renewable raw materials help to conserve valuable and limited fossil raw materials and the climate, enable multiple uses and save energy. At the end of their lives, they can usually be easily disposed of. The public sector has the opportunity to demonstrate building with renewable raw materials in an exemplary, credible and commendable manner. [1] N.N.: NACHWACHSENDE ROHSTOFFE IM EINKAUF Themenheft IV: Öffentliches Bauen & Sanieren, (German language only, free download) By: Michael Thielen 14th Annual 1-3 April 2019 Passenger Terminal Amsterdam Amsterdam MEET THE PRODUCERS AND BRANDS INVESTING IN BIO-BASED SOLUTIONS Visit: Follow us: @Bio_BasedWorld #WBM19 Produced by bioplastics MAGAZINE [01/19] Vol. 14 41

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