Recently, the problems regarding plastics such as low recycling usage of plastic waste and ocean pollution by plastic have been a global issue to solve urgently. As widely reported, the Collins dictionary in the UK choses "the word of the year" every year. The word, "Single use " was chosen as "the word of the year" in 2018. This indicates how single use plastic such as straws, trays and cups have affected the world's environment including oceans and rivers badly in recent years. Responding this trend, more and more corporations such as Starbucks, Kentucky, Hilton hotels and so on have declared they would stop usage of single use plastic.
According to the repot of UNEP in 2018, "Single Use Plastic", the volume of production is the largest in packaging sector, consisting 36% of the total production of plastic products. Japan waste the second largest amount of plastic per capita, following the US. Although it is thought that Japan is an eco-conscious country, the reality is different from the image.
The plastic waste that is not treated domestically in Japan was exported mainly to China and other Asian developing countries, and those countries accepted the plastic as resources. However, at the end of 2017, China decided to ban importing those plastic waste as it pollutes the environment in China. Other Asian nations followed China's move. As a consequence, the plastic waste is being accumulated in developed countries, and how to treat those plastic waste has been becoming an urgent problem in the world.
To recycle the plastic waste may be one of the solutions for this issue. Nonetheless, the cost to recycle the plastic waste costs largely. The basic rule of 3R is that the first step of the 3R, "reduction" cost the least compared to the latter two steps, "reuse" and "recycling". We should reduce the consumption of plastics rather than trying to reuse or recycle the plastics. From this point of view, biomass plastics made from biomass and petroleum products have attracted attention as a better solution for the plastic waste problem, these days.
Biomass plastics are a form of plastics derived from renewable biomass sources such as grass, vegetables and so on mixed with fossil fuel plastics. Corns and sugar canes are common materials of bioplastics, but any kind of organic wastes including coffee grounds and pruning waste can be resources of bioplastics. In Japan, the amount of domestic production of bioplastics was approximately 70,000 tons in 2013. Japanese government declared in its official plan that they aim to increase the production of bioplastics up to 1,970,000 tons by 2030, while decreasing the production of petroleum plastics.
The are some challenges for spreading bioplastics. Firstly, the production cost of bio plastics is expensive. Secondly, a large amount of fossil fuel is consumed to produce bioplastics. Thirdly, strength and heat-resistance of bioplastics are not so good. The first and second disadvantages are related closely. In order to dry biomass to be mixed with petroleum plastics, high heat is necessary, consequently, huge amount of fossil fuel is consumed to generate bioplastics. It means the production cost becomes expensive and the environmental loading becomes significant. However, by treating the biomass by RedoxMaster, these challenges which have been prevented bioplastics from spreading can be solved very easily. RedoxMaster dry organic matters significantly fast at low temperatures, it is possible to reduce the production cost of bioplastics hugely compared to conventional drying technologies. Moreover, it does not oxidize and carbonize organic substances, the problem of strength can be settled.
We hope our new generation technology, RedoxMaster can contribute to address the plastic wastes problem in the world.