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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Seven years ago, one of the co-founders was sitting by his window, waiting for a call. As he waited, he saw a truck pull up outside his apartment complex. A hauler had come to collect the building’s waste.
He watched the hauler pick up the dumpster, even though it was mostly empty. He realized there had to be a better, more efficient way to coordinate waste removal, he called a friend to tell him what he’d seen. They talked about waste, about technology, smart sensors, efficiency, routing, and even did some dumpster dives.
After a lot of research and trials, they’d built their first sensor, put it into a dumpster and Enevo was born. Enevo started in 2010 as a sensor company in Finland with a passion for improving an inefficient system. They soon learned that sensors, routing software, optimized collections and transparency were only half the story.
What their customers needed most wasn’t more information about their waste stream. It was the peace of mind that Enevo’s technology, expertise and service provide. The company now provides full management of waste and recycling services for restaurant, retail and commercial property customers throughout North America.
Enevo works with its customers to transform the financial, environmental and social impact of waste.
Enevo has raised more than $34M in private equity funding to date and continues to invest in technology and new processes to deliver the peace of mind its customers need.
Fredrik Kekäläinen is a technologist, innovator and entrepreneur who founded Enevo in 2010 to meet the challenges of efficient, proactive waste management and recycling in an increasingly urbanized world.Fredrik started his first company in 1996 while still studying at the Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki, Finland. Eightball Ltd., a pioneering mobile software business was successfully sold in 1999. He continued his startup journey as co-founder of Fathammer Inc., a developer of 3D graphics software systems for embedded and mobile applications. Fathammer was acquired by Japan-based Acrodea Inc., shortly before it went public on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in October 2006.
VP of Operations
Before joining Enevo, Anthony was Principal at Logical Networks and Technical Operations Manager. Anthony holds a Bachelors degree Business at the Framingham State University.
Enevo’s Co-Founder and CTO, leading the development of Enevo’s technology – our key differentiator and our most valuable tool as an organization.