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Issue 06/2017

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Polyurethanes /

Polyurethanes / Elastomers Renwable polyols Perstorp launches world’s first portfolio of renewable polyols Perstorp (Malmö, Sweden) recently announced the world’s first portfolio of renewable alternatives to the essential polyols Pentaerythritol (Penta), Trimethylolpropane (TMP), and Neopentyl glycol (Neo). The product portfolio was globally launched at China Coat (15-17 November 2017, Shanghai). The launch is a response to the fast growing global need for more sustainable Coatings, Resins and Synthetic Lubricants to mention a few. This means that Perstorp is the only chemical company in the world to offer all three essential polyols Penta, TMP and Neo in both traditional and renewable forms. World’s first renewable Penta, known as Voxtar, was launched in 2010. It can reduce carbon footprint by up to 80 % compared to fossil alternatives. The addition of two new innovative products; Evyron (partly renewable TMP) and Neeture (partly renewable Neo) will give Perstorp’s customers a clear market advantage in creating proenvironmental low carbon footprint products. Anna Berggren, Global Market Segment Manager for Resins at Perstorp commented: “The time is right to add two new renewable polyols. The market demand for biobased material is rapidly increasing due to a strong focus on sustainable chemistry and renewable raw materials. We are committed to our environmental responsibility as well as to helping our customers in their sustainable development. We are dedicated to our pro-environment products, giving prioritized supply for pro-environmental partners at all times.” Committed to the pro-environmental walk Perstorp’s commitment to sustainability runs deep in the company led by CEO, Jan Secher. “This launch is a great achievement and I’m very proud of the engagement from our employees. It’s clear that we are looking to make a difference. Sustainability is in the core of everything we do which also makes it a perfect strategic fit.” Perstorp’s new pro-environment portfolio is a great example of how they intend to work towards their 2030 ambition to become Finite Material Neutral. “It is a tough ambition but we have to do it. There is no plan B, because we only have one planet,” Jan continues. Currently Perstorp is devoting 80 % of its R&D resources to finding new sustainable solutions and in addition, all Perstorp Swedish plants will switch to using only renewable electricity in 2018. “With the new pro-environment products we are launching at China Coat, we are reaffirming that we believe our molecules can change things for the better”, Jan concludes. Good for business and good for the environment The two new Pro-Environment Polyols – Evyron and Neeture - complete the portfolio of the three essential polyols in renewable options. The new portfolio is based on a certified mass balance concept. Mass balance is about mixing fossil and renewable in the same existing systems but keeping track of their quantities and allocating them to specific products. This ensures that the quality and performance of the molecules are exactly the same giving customers a real go-pro-environmental choice. Perstorp’s Pro-Environment Polyols are all ISCC certified which among other things ensures a traceability of the biobased raw material back to its country of origin. Anna Berggren highlights: “The biobased material in our products is sustainably sourced and I am proud to say that Perstorp launches world´s first portfolio of renewable polyols. And even better, they will also be the first to become ISCC certified.” MT 16 bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/17] Vol. 12

Polyurethanes / Elastomers Congratulations! Ford Motor Company celebrates 10-year anniversary of soybean-based foam Ten years ago, the 2008 Ford Mustang launched with seats made of soybean-based foam. Today, soy foam has saved over 100,000 tonnes (228 million pounds) of CO 2 from entering the atmosphere; the same as would be consumed by four million trees per year, according to a consumer horticulturist at North Carolina State University. Ford has used soy foam since the Mustang went into production in late 2007, replacing traditional petroleumbased foam that most industries use. Researching and testing renewable, plant-based alternatives to petroleumbased plastics is something Ford has been committed to since 2000. “From our labs to our suppliers, incorporating renewable materials into auto parts takes a lot of work, but it’s the right thing to do,” said Executive Chairman Bill Ford. “At Ford, we want to do our part to reduce our impact on the environment, and using more sustainable materials in the vehicle is one of the ways we are doing this.” Since 2011, every Ford vehicle built in North America uses the soy foam in seat cushions, backs and headrests. It meets the company’s strict requirements as a renewable solution and doesn’t compromise durability and performance. Over the past decade, approximately 18.5 million vehicles have been produced with soy foam in them - that’s over 578 billion soybeans. Debbie Mielewski, Ford senior technical leader, has been leading the sustainable materials effort from the beginning, and said it wasn’t easy convincing suppliers to do molding trials; especially when petroleum oil prices were available at a low cost. The United Soybean Board (USB) - a group located in Chesterfield, Missouri, USA, that oversees investments in soybean innovations nationwide - played an integral role in funding the initial trials, and Bill Ford kept the project moving through all obstacles. “We may not have ever gone to market with soy foam if Bill Ford had not been at the helm,” Mielewski said. “It was a project that would only move forward with both a visionary and an environmentalist in the driver’s seat, so to speak, and we were lucky to have him there.” In 2008, when oil prices skyrocketed, the value of soy foam became widely apparent - not only was replacing petroleumbased polyol with soy beneficial to the environment, it could also save the company money. Ford worked tirelessly with other industries to help them formulate foams that met their specific requirements, like agriculture, furniture and home goods, allowing them the chance to also incorporate it into their products - stretching the environmental benefits even further. “We knew that putting farm materials into a performance car like the Mustang could be met with a lot of skepticism,” said Mielewski. “But we also knew that if we succeeded, the foam we created could, over time, make a positive impact.” After the success of soy foam, Ford began the development of other renewable materials to reinforce plastics in vehicles, including wheat straw, rice hulls and cellulose fibers from sustainably grown trees, coconut fibers and kenaf. The sustainable materials research team is currently working on approximately 20 other unlikely sustainable candidates for auto parts - tomato peels, agave fiber (tequila), recycled U.S. currency, dandelions and algae to name a few. They continue to work with the USB to develop soy-based materials for rubber components like tires and gaskets. “Soy foam was an important first step, but we still have a lot of work to do,” said Mielewski. “There are many more opportunities arising to reduce our environmental impact, and with resources becoming more constrained, it becomes more important that we explore them.” MT | bioplastics MAGAZINE [06/17] Vol. 12 17

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