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Issue 02/2018

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  • Bioplastics
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  • Biobased
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  • Germany
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News daily upated news

News daily upated news at EU waste legislation recognises benefits of bioplastics The provisional agreements reached by the European Council and Parliament on the EU waste legislative package published by the Commission in 2015, recognise the benefits of bioplastics. The new legislation acknowledges that bio-based feedstock for plastic packaging as well as compostable plastics for separate bio-waste collection contribute to more efficient waste management and help to reduce the impacts of plastic packaging on the environment. The legislative package includes the revision of the Waste Framework Directive and the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive. “Bioplastics are recognised for their circular nature. Both directives emphasise the potential of biobased mechanically recyclable and biobased compostable plastic packaging to foster a European circular economy”, says François de Bie, Chairman of European Bioplastics (EUBP), the association for the bioplastics industry in Europe, and adds: “Substituting fossil-based feedstock with renewable resources is a key transition that is supported by this new legislation.” The revised Waste Framework Directive allows biodegradable and compostable packaging to be collected together with the bio-waste and recycled in industrial composting and anaerobic digestion, which has already successfully been implemented in several Member States. By 2023, separate collection of bio-waste is set to be mandatory throughout Europe. Biodegradable plastics verifiably help to collect more bio-waste and ultimately contribute to reaching the new recycling targets. Relevant European standards, such as the harmonized standard EN 13432 for industrially compostable plastic packaging can serve as basis for future standards for composting outlined in the agreed revision. The Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive acknowledges that biobased plastics help to minimise the environmental impacts of plastic packaging and to reduce Europe’s dependence on imported raw materials. Biobased and recycled materials are equally viable solutions to make packaging more sustainable. While Member States are encouraged to promote the use of biobased recyclable packaging and biobased compostable packaging, the European legislators miss the chance to introduce concrete legislative measures stimulating their use and improving market conditions for such products. Furthermore, the agreed text makes a clear distinction between biodegradable compostable plastics and so-called oxo-degradable plastics, which shall not be considered biodegradable. This position has also been integrated in the recently published EU Strategy on Plastics, which aims to restrict the use of oxo-degradable plastics. EUBP congratulates the representatives of the Trilogue on this important step to integrate mechanical recycling and organic recycling into a vision for a future European circular economy, as well as recognising the importance of separate collection, in order to make waste management more efficient. We are also looking forward to continue working closely together with the EU institutions to elaborate on the bioeconomy’s role to boost the circular economy, to identify synergies and to ensure that the initial acknowledgements of alternative biobased feedstocks in the waste legislative package will be further developed throughout the future initiatives such as the outlined actions of the EU Plastics Strategy. MT New ECOZEN grades with enhanced transparency VELOX GmbH (Hamburg, Germany), one of Europe’s leading solution providers of raw material specialities for the plastics, composites, additives and paint & coatings industries, has a long term partnership with SK Chemicals (South Korea). SK Chemicals has recently modified its biobased lines, significantly improving their transparency and performance. Especially the cosmetic packaging industry, the food as well as household and consumer goods markets will benefit from the new development. “The new Ecozen portfolio is further adding value to the needs of the cosmetic and packaging industries by providing a highly transparent, heat- as well as chemical resistant polymer”, comments François Minec, General Manager at Velox. “The color tone of the material has been drastically improved, having become perfectly suited for clear crystal- or glass-like applications.” Besides, Ecozen is an eco-friendly solution, containing an appropriate amount of bio-mass and is free of Bisphenol A. Further benefits of the material are easy processing, energy efficiency, high printability, excellent recyclability as well as impact strength. Velox provides the new range in nearly all European countries. MT | Velox provides enhanced co-polyesters for glass replacement in cosmetics and packaging industries. 6 bioplastics MAGAZINE [02/18] Vol. 13

News Bio-on launches biodegradable controlledrelease solution Bio-on (Bologna, Italy) recently launched another revolutionary new use for its 100 % natural and biodegradable PHAs bioplastic. Bio-on researchers have developed a solution for the controlled release of Urea fertilisers, an enormous market with global annual production of 180 million tonnes and 4 % annual growth. The advantage is more effective dosage and lower fertiliser consumption. This means less pollution and a positive impact on people and the planet. Bio-on has developed an innovative technology to coat Urea for fertiliser and has set up a NEWCO called U-COAT (Urea Coating). This new company 100 % owned by Bio-on S.p.A. has exclusive rights to use the technologies developed by Bio-on for coating fertilisers with a natural product such as PHAs, the biopolymer developed by Bio-on, which is natural and biodegradable without leaving any trace on the environment. U-Coat will pay running royalties to Bio-on for every quantity produced or sub-licensed on the fertilisers market. Bioon owns 100 % of the technology licensed or sub-licensed through U-Coat to international manufacturers. MT Bcomp partners with ESA Bcomp, Fribourg, Switzerland, specialised in natural fibre materials, has signed a 2-year contract with the European Spatial Agency (ESA) to participate in the ESA Clean Space initiative. The program, carried out and financed by the ESA, develops solutions in order to understand and reduce the environmental impact of space activities, produce less space debris and remove that which is still in orbit. Right now, an ESA space mission produces as much CO 2 as 50 Paris-New York return-flights. In addition, the debris from former missions circle the low earth orbit, thus remaining a risk to the active satellites. Furthermore, the debris poses a threat to people if it re-enters the atmosphere without entirely burning up. As part of this program, Bcomp will test two of its natural-fibre materials, ampliTex technical fabrics and powerRibs ® reinforcements, in conditions simulating those of low earth orbit. ampliTex materials have already proven themselves in the sports and automotive sectors, thanks to outstanding stiffness, lightness and damping properties. The latter is of crucial interest in order to absorb the intense vibrations that occur during the launch of a satellite. MT THE BENCHMARK FOR COST EFFECTIVENESS. application The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published in early December 2017 a new patent application (U.S. 62/345,399) from the Iowa Corn Promotion Board (ICPB) adding to a previously issued U.S. patent on a proprietary production method using corn in the industrial manufacturing of monoethylene glycol (MEG). MEG is an industrial chemical used in the manufacture of among other things, plastic resins, such as PET or PEF. Today, MEG makes up about 30 % of PET bottles and fibers. The patent covers an improvement in the process conditions to increase efficiency from approximately 60 % to 85 % yield. “Production efficiencies that drive yield while reducing cost drive success - this holds true in manufacturing as well as in farming,” said Pete Brecht, a farmer from Central City who chairs Iowa Corn’s Research and Business Development Committee. “Patenting research that improves production efficiencies of corn-based bio-MEG helps us eliminate the need for petroleum-based ethylene derivatives. This creates more environmentally friendly consumer bioplastic New MEG patent products and increases demand for Iowa corn farmers.” 59 euros/tonne The current way bio-MEG is made is From through post-consumer a conversion plastic for high-quality recycled pellets of sugarcane ethanol, which is sourced to high-quality, e.g. from top Brazil, recycled 110 µm filtered* to pellets for only 59 euros/tonne*. ethylene, but still the majority of MEG The INTAREMA comes from ® TVEplus fossil ® fuels. ICPB’s patented process can eliminate sets the standard the added in terms costs of of bio-MEG by going from corn sugar production to MEG efficiency in one step. and cost effectiveness: extremely low Most MEG currently goes into energy making consumption, polyethylene high terephthalate (PET), a plastic used throughput for beverage thanks bottles, to Counter Current technology, laboursaving can through also be automation used as polyester textiles, and films, but MEG anti-freeze, coolants, aircraft deicers and remarkably industrial low solvents. service Plastic companies are currently making costs. limited quantities of bottles utilizing biobased MEG made That’s from Careformance! sugarcane-based ethanol imported from South America. In 2016, 28 million tonnes of MEG were sold. The market continues to grow at the rate of about 4 % a year and that 4 % equates to about 94 million bushels (2.4 million tonnes) of corn. MT *) Production costs for recycled pellets on an INTAREMA ® 2018 TVEplus ® with EREMA Laserfi lter, input material: washed supermarket fi lm LD/LLDPE 98/2, 8 % moisture, calculation incl. investment costs (amortisation 5 years) and variable costs (labour, electricity, water, service and maintenance). CAREFORMANCE We care about your performance. INTAREMA ® TVEplus ® 1802011ERE_Ins_bioplastics Magazine.indd 1 bioplastics MAGAZINE 20.02.18 [02/18] Vol. 15:3513 7

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