Bioplastic – According to the European Bioplastic Society, a material is considered bioplastic if it is biodegradable or is made of bio-material (biomass derived product, eg corn, cellulose) or both simultaneously. Biodegradable products undergo a chemical process by which microorganisms in the environment decompose the material into natural substances such as water, carbon dioxide and compost.
The extreme pollution the planet has faced in the last century has prompted the governments of the world to take action to combat it. One of these measures recently implemented in Romania as a member of the EU is banning the manufacture of plastic bags or bags with thin plastic handles less than 50 microns starting with the 1st of July 2018 and the prohibition of their marketing as of the 1st of January 2019.
The bioplastics industry is constantly growing, with more and more manufacturers focusing on the production of biodegradable products, packaging, food, pharmaceutical, textile, catering or even agriculture. Europe is a region of major importance in the bioplastics industry, especially from the point of view of research, but it is also a huge selling market. One fifth of the bioplastic mass production capacity is located in Europe. The largest bioplastic producer is Asia, with more than 50% of the production being manufactured in 2017 on this continent.
Bioplastics reduces dependence on limited oil resources and reduces carbon emissions, contributing to the European Union’s proposed targement by 2020. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is a major factor causing a greenhouse effect by increasing annual temperature averages, being also linked to the increase in the prevalence of storms, floods and droughts. Consequently, the decrease in carbon dioxide emissions has become a central theme in global environmental policies.
What can we do?
Favoring renewable materials!