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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Gr3n invented a new process that allows recycling PET bottles/food containers chemically in a profitable way. The process also enables the recycling of synthetic textile fibers and mixed materials.
Gr3n developed this process based on a new application of microwave technology to a well-known chemical reaction that provides an economically efficient chemical recycling process of PET and allows an industrial implementation of this recycling method. This new process can potentially change how PET is recycled worldwide with a huge financial benefit for the recycling industry.
The depolymerization of the PET or polyester textile i.e. its conversion into the building blocks constituting the polymer makes it possible to indefinitely use those molecules to produce virgin PET.
In the past many efforts to transfer the chemical recycling from research labs to industry failed because the economics were not favorable. Thanks to the DEMETO technology (Depolymerization by Microwave Technology) developed by gr3n this technology is now viable. Gr3n provides a chemical recycling solution, closing the PET life cycle, offering polymer grade material, treating waste, lowering carbon footprint and most importantly provides relevant cost savings for players in the value chain.
Gr3n's technology has been CTI certified (Quality Validation Certificate of the Swiss Government) and was granted funding by EU trough the Consortium Symbioptima.
Maurizio is a materials inventor in the true sense of the word, solving key issues by creating a new material in many fields of the materials science.
Before becoming CEO and CTO of Gr3n, he was Materials Developer at Antenna Company.
Maurizio is Phd Materials Science at the University of Milano - Bicocca.
Matteo has worked in primary investment banks, both Italian and Global, in the Equity Capital Market department. He then moved in major multinational companies, in Industrial and Infrastructure sectors, having increasing responsibilities in the Investor Relations, Strategic Planning and Corporate Finance departments.