Slides made from Wilson tennis balls and color-block pants made from two Columbia Sportswear ski jackets are two of her more unexpected designs.
The spin-off of Wageningen University and Research (WUR), ChainCraft, makes sustainable and fully circular fatty acids. The raw material is used in various industries and for different products. Currently, the company focuses on the animal feed industry. “The fatty acids are good for the intestinal flora of the animals,” says Niels van Stralen, director of ChainCraft. At the moment, fatty acids are still mainly made with petrochemical oil – which is made from petroleum – or palm oil. “These types of oil are not good for the environment. Our fatty acids are completely biobased and therefore a lot less environmentally harmful,” states Van Stralen. “Moreover, we can make the fatty acids locally. That saves a lot of costs and CO2 emissions around transport.”
At Monday’s Environment Council, ministers exchanged views on the package presented by the European Commission on January 26, 2018, which aims at delivering on the circular economy action plan. The package consists of the following elements: European strategy for plastics in a circular economy; a Monitoring framework for the circular economy; and Implementation of the Circular Economy package: options to address the interface between chemical, product and waste legislation. They based their debate on a note prepared by the Presidency and took into account the interventions of Commissioners Vella and Arias Cañete, who were present. Ministers agreed that they welcome the presentation of the new EU plastics strategy. They highlighted the need to move forward with the plastics strategy as it aims to improve how we use and recycle plastics. Plastics have been instrumental in achieving the economic and social standards we have today. However, in recent years marine littering and other undesirable consequences linked to the use of plastic have been a concern to environment ministers. All Ministers welcomed the Commission package and called for an urgent implementation of concrete measures, in particular to increase the recycling of plastics, find solutions to the widespread use of single-use plastic and to find a holistic approach to the value chain of plastic production. Eco-design for plastic products can play a very important role here. In their exchange of views, ministers mentioned several other possible actions to be taken at EU or at national levels: campaigns for raising consumer awareness; increasing the quality of recycled products through setting standards; green public procurement; and the use of the rules on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR), similar to the one which was agreed recently in the waste package, together with financial incentives and voluntary commitments by the industry. Finally, ministers agreed that they are all looking forward to the Commission legislative proposal on single use plastics. “We need to protect our environment from plastic pollution. We also need to protect our seas from microplastic particles.
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Milk-based edible food packaging and ready-meal trays made from wood could help reduce the pervasiveness of single-use plastic, a major cause of environmental pollution adversely affecting wildlife, habitats and human health.