Plastic-eating superworms with ‘recycling plant’ in their guts might get a job gobbling up waste

Plastic-eating superworms with ‘recycling plant’ in their guts might get a job gobbling up waste

via SCMP Scientists from Australia’s University of Queensland have discovered that a type of beetle larvae called Zophobas morio can consume and break down polystyrene. Research published in the scientific journal Microbial Genomics on June 9, 2022, says the superworms possess special gut enzymes that can break down plastic. The researchers say they now hope to study the enzymes to engineer ways the substance could be used to break down and dispose of plastic waste in the future.

Lab turns hard-to-process plastic waste into carbon-capture master

Lab turns hard-to-process plastic waste into carbon-capture master

via Phys.org

What seems like a win-win for a pair of pressing environmental problems describes a Rice University lab’s newly discovered chemical technique to turn waste plastic into an effective carbon dioxide (CO2) sorbent for industry.

plastic scrap

Rice chemist James Tour and co-lead authors Rice alumnus Wala Algozeeb, graduate student Paul Savas and postdoctoral researcher Zhe Yuan reported in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Nano that heating plastic waste in the presence of potassium acetate produced particles with nanometer-scale pores that trap carbon dioxide molecules.

Read the full story here: https://phys.org/news/2022-04-lab-hard-to-process-plastic-carbon-capture-master.html

 

DOE Invests $13.4 Million to Combat Plastic Waste, Reduce Plastic Industry Emissions

via Energy.gov

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced $13.4 million in funding for next generation plastics technologies that reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions of single-use plastics. The seven selected research and development (R&D) projects — led by industry and universities — will convert plastic films into more valuable materials and design new plastics that are more recyclable and biodegradable. This investment advances  DOE’s work to address the challenges of plastic waste recycling and supports the Biden Administration’s efforts to build a clean energy economy and ensure the U.S. reaches net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. 

Read the full story here: https://www.energy.gov/articles/doe-invests-134-million-combat-plastic-waste-reduce-plastic-industry-emissions

TRASH AND BURN

BIG BRANDS STOKE CEMENT KILNS WITH PLASTIC WASTE AS RECYCLING FALTERS

Consumer goods giants are funding projects to send plastic trash to cement plants, where it is burned as cheap energy. They’re touting it as a way to keep plastic out of dumps and use less fossil fuel. Critics say it undercuts recycling efforts and worsens air quality. One said it was “like moving the landfill from the ground to the sky.”

The global consumer goods industry’s plans for dealing with the vast plastic waste it generates can be seen here in a landfill on the outskirts of Indonesia’s capital, where a swarm of excavators tears into stinking mountains of garbage.

Read the full story here: https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/environment-plastic-cement/

Plastics to outpace coal’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 -report

WASHINGTON, Oct 21 (Reuters) – The carbon-intensive production of plastics is on pace to emit more greenhouse gases than coal-fired power plants within this decade, undercutting global efforts to tackle climate change, a report released on Thursday said.

The report by Bennington College and Beyond Plastics projected that the plastic industry releases at least 232 million tons of greenhouse gases each year throughout its lifecycle from the drilling for oil and gas to fuel its facilities to incineration of plastic waste. That is the equivalent of 116 coal-fired power plants.

Read the full story here: https://www.reuters.com/business/cop/plastics-outpace-coals-greenhouse-gas-emissions-by-2030-report-2021-10-21/

plastic scrap recycling
Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Bubble Curtain Technology Prevents Entry Of 500 Tonnes Of Plastic Waste In Yamuna River

via The Logical Indian

In a bid to address the growing menace of plastic pollution in the water bodies, Geocycle India—the in-house waste management arm of Ambuja Cements Limited and ACC Limited, has been doing enormous efforts to collect and co-process the plastic waste in the country. The company implemented bubble curtain technology in April 2021 to stop plastic from entering the river Yamuna in Agra. Now, it has successfully managed to thwart 500 tonnes of plastic waste leakage in the river within a span of just six months. The collected waste will now be processed within Ambuja and ACC plants, as per India CSR.

Read the full story here: https://thelogicalindian.com/responsiblebusiness/geocycle-indias-bubble-barrier-plastic-waste-yamuna-30936

Partnership to study chemically recycling plastics from ASR

via Recycling Today

plastic scrap recycling

Eastman, Kingsport, Tennessee, has announced that it is collaborating with Padnos and the United States Automotive Materials Partnership LLC (USAMP) on a concept feasibility study to recycle mixed plastic scrap recovered from automotive shredder residue (ASR). USAMP is a subsidiary of the United States Council for Automotive Research LLC (USCAR).  

ASR consists of mixed plastic and other materials and currently end up in landfills or in waste-to-energy technologies. Under this initiative, Padnos, Holland, Michigan, will supply ASR as a feedstock for Eastman’s molecular recycling process. The company operates auto shredders in Holland and Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Read the full story here: https://www.recyclingtoday.com/article/padnost-eastman-usamp-studing-chemically-recycling-asr/

Genetically engineered microbes convert waste plastic into vanillin

via Chemistry World

Scientists in the UK have genetically engineered Escherichia coli to transform plastic waste into vanillin. ‘Instead of simply recycling plastic waste into more plastic, what our system demonstrates for the first time is that you can use plastic as a feedstock for microbial cells and transform it into something with higher value and more industrial utility,’ says Stephen Wallace from the University of Edinburgh. The biotransformation ‘isn’t just replacing a current chemical process, it’s actually achieving something that can’t be done using modern synthetic methods.’

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is one of the most widely used types of plastic. Most existing recycling technologies degrade PET into its substituent monomers, ethylene glycol and terephthalic acid, then repurpose them in second-generation plastic materials. Wallace and Joanna Sadler, also at the University of Edinburgh, want to upcycle these monomers into alternative products.

Read the full story here: https://www.chemistryworld.com/news/genetically-engineered-microbes-convert-waste-plastic-into-vanillin/4013767.article

plastic scrap

DOE invests $14.5M in plastics recycling R&D

via Waste Today Magazine

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Washington, has announced it plans to invest up to $14.5 million for research and development to cut waste and reduce the energy used to recycle single-use plastics such as plastic bags, wraps and films. This funding is part of the department’s Plastics Innovation Challenge.

According to a news release from the DOE, this funding directed toward plastics recycling technologies will advance the department’s work to address the challenges of plastic scrap recycling and support the Biden administration’s efforts to build a clean energy economy and ensure the U.S. reaches net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Read the full story here: https://www.wastetodaymagazine.com/article/department-energy-funding-plastics-innovation-challenge-update/

MSU Researchers Publish Study On Biomineralization Of Plastic Waste For Cement Mortar

via JDSupra

On April 13, 2021, Montana State University (MSU) researchers from its Norm Asbjornson College of Engineering published an article entitled “Biomineralization of Plastic Waste to Improve the Strength of Plastic-Reinforced Cement Mortar.” The study evaluates calcium carbonate biomineralization techniques applied to coat plastic waste and improve the compressive strength of plastic-reinforced mortar (PRM), a type of plastic-reinforced cementitious material (PRC).

Read the full sotry here: https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/msu-researchers-publish-study-on-8199658/