The term "biodegradable" has been used over the past few years, to describe plastics or packaging that could potentially be metabolized by microorganisms in nature, with complete breakdown to CO2/Methane, water and biomass. However, there is significant confusion and controversy surrounding biodegradable plastics since many suppliers have used the term to loosely describe their material/packaging without specifying the conditions under which the material would degrade in nature. For instance, some plastics (like PLA) will only degrade under industrial composting conditions, while some others (like PHA) can break down under a wider range of conditions and environments (industrial, backyard, marine). Given this widespread confusion and the misuse of the "biodegradable" term, many global government and industry organizations have issued guidelines to restrict or eliminate the unqualified use of biodegradable as a descriptor of plastics or packaging. These include the European Commission guidelines (European Plastics Strategy) and the Federal Trade Commission Green Guides in the US.
In line with such guidelines, Ubuntoo's recommends that companies providing biodegradable materials, products or packaging:
1.Avoid unqualified use of the term "biodegradable" to describe their products
2.Any claim of biodegradability should be accompanied by a description of specific conditions and environments under which the material or product will undergo degradation in nature
3.It is strongly recommended that companies provide globally accepted certifications or testing for various biodegradability claims (such as the BPA certification for industrial composting)
Further in line with the position articulated by the European Commission as well as major CPG companies, Ubuntoo recommends that "biodegradable" plastics should not be considered a solution for littering (or worse a license to litter). Appropriate collection and end-of-life solutions (such as industrial composting or home composting) need to be put into place to avoid biodegradable plastics ending up as litter in the environment.
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CLYNK is a bottle redemption system that allows customers to create a personal account and to drop off bags of redeemable containers, accumulating their deposit fees in an electronic account for use at their discretion. CLYNK’s unique database also lets customers track personal environmental impact every time they drop a bag at CLYNK.
Customers save time, money and the environment, and they have the option to give back to hundreds of community organizations directly from their home computer.
Their material recovery facilities are in Maine and New York.
How does it work?
Bag it: Fill your green CLYNK bag with redeemable containers (limit 20 lbs.) Tie it tight.
Tag it: Slap on a bag tag sticker with your personalized barcode.
Drop it: Bring it to your local Hannaford Supermarket and grab your groceries while you’re there.
CLYNK will collect and process bags, and within two business days, funds will go automatically into your own CLYNK account. Then use your cash for groceries, that something you’ve always wanted, or donate to a CLYNK to Give partner.
CLYNK has received several grants from the Maine Institute of Technology and in 2012, was presented with the Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence in Maine. Clayton Klye, it's Founder and CEO, was named 2018 Maine Recycling and Solid Waste Sustainable Business Leader of the Year by Maine Resource Recovery Association.
The Oregon Bottle Redemption Cooperative, CRINC in Iowa, and Encorp Atlantic Inc. in New Brunswick, Canada has adopted CLYNK licensed proprietary technology.