CHEMICAL TECHNOLOGY

Kimberly-Clark Professional™ Expands The RightCycle™ Program to Include Recycling of Used Plastic Packaging

Kimberly-Clark Professional | June 27, 2022

Kimberly-Clark Professional
Kimberly-Clark Professional, a global leader in contamination control solutions for cleanrooms and laboratories, has expanded The RightCycle Program, the first large-scale recycling effort for non-hazardous lab, cleanroom and industrial PPE waste. Flex-film plastic packaging from Kimtech™ and KleenGuard™ products will now be accepted for recycling through the program.

"This is a significant step in addressing a challenging waste stream that currently has very low recycling rates compared with other commodities, such as paper and cardboard. As the program continues to grow and evolve, we remain committed to finding ways to expand our recycling capabilities in order to help our customers reach their goals and to deliver on our purpose of Better Care for a Better World."

Mike Haley, Vice President of PPE at Kimberly-Clark Professional

Since 2011, The RightCycle Program has empowered more than 900 customers to divert 3.7 million pounds of waste.

Film and flexible packaging are composed of various substances, and recycling them requires a specific approach. In 2019, only 5% of managed plastic waste in the United States was recycled, according to scientists with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The RightCycle Program has established partnerships and processes to properly recycle these items.

In addition to plastic packaging waste, The RightCycle Program collects previously hard-to-recycle personal protective equipment (PPE) such as garments, masks, gloves, and goggles. These items are then recycled by regional partners that create new plastic pellets, which are used to produce consumer products and durable goods, including flowerpots and lawn furniture, benches, and bicycle racks.

Originating in the United States with a few scientific manufacturing customers, The RightCycle Program is now available in nine countries across Europe and North America with a wide range of customers that include universities, zoos, laboratories, manufacturing facilities, breweries, and a variety of other businesses. 

The RightCycle Program contributes to Kimberly-Clark's global 2030 ambition, which is to improve the lives of 1 billion people in underserved communities around the globe with the smallest environmental footprint. Kimberly-Clark understands that a strong and enduring focus on safeguarding natural systems is just as essential to helping people live a better life. To that end, the company is focused on the areas where it can make the biggest difference – climate, forests, water and plastics.

Kimberly-Clark aspires to be at the forefront of the transition to a circular, reuse economy by reducing waste, promoting waste-handling system improvements, and innovating new ways of providing people with the products that they need to live their best lives. In 2021, the company expanded The RightCycle Program in Europe to other categories to include the recycling of both plastic dispensers and hand towels. This will provide Kimberly-Clark Professional with an even greater opportunity to reduce its environmental footprint in collaboration with its customers.

Watch a brief video about Kimberly-Clark Professional's RightCycle partners, including the Jackson County Developmental Center (JCDC) and Somerset Recycling Services, a plastics processing organization in Kentucky. Since 2016, Somerset Recycling Services has recovered nearly 3 million pounds of recyclable materials from The RightCycle Program.

About Kimberly-Clark Professional
Kimberly-Clark Professional partners with businesses to create Exceptional Workplaces, helping to make them healthier, safer and more productive. Key brands in this segment include Kleenex, Scott, WypAll, KleenGuard and Kimtech. 

About Kimberly-Clark
Kimberly-Clark and its trusted brands are an indispensable part of life for people in more than 175 countries. Fueled by ingenuity, creativity, and an understanding of people's most essential needs, we create products that help individuals experience more of what's important to them. Our portfolio of brands, including Huggies, Kleenex, Scott, Kotex, Cottonelle, Poise, Depend, Andrex, Pull-Ups, GoodNites, Intimus, Neve, Plenitud, Sweety, Softex, Viva and WypAll, hold the No. 1 or No. 2 share position in 80 countries. We use sustainable practices that support a healthy planet, build stronger communities, and ensure our business thrives for decades to come. 

Spotlight

The use and adoption of digital technologies has increased significantly in the last 12 months. Yet, there are still a lot of chemical companies that do not have a clear strategy on how to leverage the significant business benefits provided by the rapidly arising new technologies. Learn in this thought paper how to get on the road to digitalization!


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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

FMC Corporation significantly expands biologicals platform with agreement to acquire BioPhero

FMC Corporation | June 30, 2022

FMC Corporation an agricultural sciences company, announced a definitive agreement to acquire BioPhero ApS, a Denmark-based pheromone research and production company. The acquisition adds biologically produced state-of-the-art pheromone insect control technology to FMC's product portfolio and R&D pipeline, underscoring FMC's role as a leader in delivering innovative and sustainable crop protection solutions. BioPhero has pioneered a highly efficient yeast fermentation process for manufacturing pheromones at significantly lower costs and with fewer production steps compared to competitors' traditional chemical synthesis methods. Lower costs expand the pheromone addressable market from today's focus on specialty fruit and vegetables to now include the large row crop market. FMC expects pheromones and pheromone-based products to contribute approximately $1 billion in revenue at above company-average EBITDA margin by 2030. "This acquisition demonstrates our continuing commitment to invest in biologicals and adjacent technologies, expanding our world-class portfolio while advancing sustainable agriculture," said Mark Douglas, FMC president and chief executive officer. "BioPhero is a pioneer in the production of pheromones through a unique, highly efficient bioprocessing method—a game-changer in pheromone manufacturing technology. FMC's broad market access, leadership position in the high-value insecticide market, formulation know-how and application expertise provide significant opportunities to bring sustainably advantaged pheromone technology to more agricultural markets around the world. We look forward to adding an extensive pheromone platform to our biologicals business and welcoming the BioPhero team to FMC." "BioPhero is excited by the opportunity to accelerate our development and the road to market with the objective to make pheromones widely available. Given FMC's leadership position in the development of biological plant health products, manufacturing and formulation expertise, and existing operations in Denmark, we believe FMC is an excellent company to take this business forward. FMC's global market access and significant investments in R&D will accelerate our ability to bring highly advanced pheromone insect control technology to growers around the world." Dr. Irina Borodina, co-founder and chief scientific officer of BioPhero Pheromones can be used in an integrated pest management program to control the buildup of insect populations in farmers' fields by disrupting the insect mating process, reducing overall egg-laying by adults and decreasing the next generation of the target insect population. Pheromones do not have an impact on the environment, promote biodiversity and do not harm beneficial insects, such as pollinators, since they precisely target specific pests. "FMC directs 100 percent of its R&D investments to discover and develop more sustainable products," said Dr. Kathleen Shelton, FMC executive vice president and chief technology officer. "We're excited to add BioPhero's innovative pheromone molecules to our new product pipeline, and we expect to launch five new pheromone products over the next three to five years. The opportunities for advanced biomanufacturing technology extend well beyond insect control. Working together, we can significantly expand the use of fermentation technologies across a wider set of crops targeting a variety of pests, including fungi and weeds." Novo Holding A/S, a world-leading science investor focused on creating long-term value, has supported BioPhero for six years. "Novo Holdings believes that biotechnology is a key component in the transition towards a more sustainable society," said Søren Møller, managing partner at Novo Holdings. "The technology developed by BioPhero is an excellent example of using nature's own pheromones to combat pests in a safe and yet efficient way. Novo Holdings has invested in BioPhero since inception and has renewed its commitment to the company in each financing round. We are very satisfied to see the rapid development of the company, and this sale demonstrates that FMC shares our vision of introducing new sustainable solutions in agriculture." The purchase price of approximately $200 million will be paid at closing. Following regulatory approvals and satisfaction of customary closing conditions, the acquisition of BioPhero is expected to be completed by the end of the third quarter 2022.

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CHEMICAL TECHNOLOGY

Ricardo Innovative Climate-Repairing Carbon Negative Technology to Support National Energy Security

Ricardo | July 12, 2022

As part of its mission to support the decarbonisation of the global energy sector, Ricardo, a world-class, strategic environmental and engineering consulting company, has received 3million GBP from the UK Government to design, install and operate a combined heat and power demonstrator plant with a carbon negative footprint which will showcase climate repairing technology. The plant will demonstrate the effectiveness of community scale greenhouse gas removal and clean energy using sustainably-sourced forestry waste. The funding is awarded through the Net Zero Innovation Portfolio under the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Ricardo is leading the consortium delivering the demonstrator plant. The consortium combines an innovative carbon capture system developed by Ricardo with the hot air turbine technology from Bluebox Energy and pyrolysis technology from Woodtek Engineering. The quarter-sized demonstrator plant, which will be located at Holmsted Farm in West Sussex in the UK, will be commissioned and operational in 2023. It will demonstrate not only a highly innovative greenhouse gas removal technology, that in the full-size system can generate renewable heat and electricity for up to 300 local homes and businesses, but also a realistic carbon negative technology that can significantly contribute to net zero targets. “Ricardo is a trusted advisor to governments around the world on climate change policy and the transition to clean energy, and is also well known for its mission to decarbonise the global transport and energy sectors. In partnership with Bluebox Energy and Woodtek Engineering, this project will demonstrate that our innovative and integrated carbon capture system can be used to benefit local communities, bolster the UK’s reputation as a pioneer in negative emission technologies, and provide a sustainable and commercially viable pathway to net-zero while also delivering national energy security.” Tim Curtis, Managing Director, Ricardo Energy and Environment Ricardo’s project is one of several across the UK which will benefit from a share of over 54 million GBP to develop technologies that remove carbon emissions from the atmosphere. Announcing this investment, UK Government’s Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Hands said: “This 54 million GBP government investment will help establish a greenhouse gas removal industry in the UK, which could be worth billions to our economy, bringing in private investment and supporting the creation of new green jobs.” The technology works by taking sustainably sourced waste wood from domestic timber production and then processing it in three ways: producing biochar (a product similar to charcoal); generating heat and power; and capturing carbon dioxide from the exhaust. The technology, therefore, captures around 95% of the carbon content in the wood. It also produces commercially marketable carbon products: the biochar can be used by farmers to enrich soil and add to animal feed to reduce ruminant emissions. The industrial-grade carbon dioxide can either be used for making low-carbon concrete or in the food and drinks industry to replace carbon dioxide derived from industrial processes which rely on imported natural gas. A full-size system will remove 16,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year from the atmosphere. Ricardo has been collaborating with Bluebox Energy since June 2020 to deliver innovative technologies that support the transition to a low carbon future. This project is a further boost to Ricardo’s credentials in tackling climate change and meeting national net zero targets. Ricardo is currently actively supporting clients in Europe in innovative carbon capture technologies and has advised the UK Government on the potential of bioenergy with carbon capture in the UK. Ricardo supports clients across a wide range of industries develop their industrial decarbonisation plans on the route to net zero. About Ricardo Ricardo plc is a world-class strategic, environmental, and engineering consulting company, listed on the London Stock Exchange. With over 100 years of engineering excellence and employing close to 3,000 employees in more than 20 countries, we provide exceptional levels of expertise in delivering leading-edge and innovative cross-sector sustainable products and solutions. Every day, we enable our customers to solve the most complex and dynamic challenges to help achieve a safe and sustainable world. Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy This funding has been made available from the government’s £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio, which looks to accelerate the commercialisation of low-carbon technologies and systems, through its Direct Air Capture and Greenhouse Gas Removal Innovation Competition. This competition will provide funding for developing technologies that enable the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere in the UK.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

TOMRA calls for closing the loop on plastics and beyond

TOMRA | June 01, 2022

TOMRA continues to play a key role in closing the loop on PET beverage containers but recognizes that there is more to be done. Now political framework, bold decisions and smart investments in collecting, sorting and recycling should be used to improve circularity across all material streams and to overcome today's supply chain bottlenecks. "We have an obligation to work with all stakeholders to reduce the mountains of waste and transform them into the valuable resources they are", TOMRA's CEO and President Tove Andersen stated at TOMRA's press conference held at IFAT. Although there has been considerable progress in recycling, the pandemic and the ongoing war in Europe have shown us that there is an urgency to decrease dependency on primary materials. "Today, we invest approximately 10% of our revenues in future-oriented activities to increase resource efficiency, advancing the market for circular solutions, which we are well-positioned to do. We have the technology capable of maximizing collection and recovery rates. We can act now, optimize waste management practices and fill existing gaps", concludes Andersen. Having established benchmarks for climate policy worldwide, the European Green Deal, coupled with binding regulations and guidelines for producers and manufacturers, drive the acceleration to a circular economy. TOMRA urges all participants in the value chain to see these specifications as an opportunity and to support their implementation. "We have learned that mandatory legislation is necessary in order to achieve goals and create markets," Dr. Volker Rehrmann, EVP, Head of Recycling/Mining & Circular Economy, explains. "However, before we can recycle larger volumes we need to collect as much as possible. There are well-functioning collection systems in place, but it is still not enough. Every day we lose valuable resources to landfill and incineration where they are buried and burned. This is low-hanging fruit and the material must be collected, recovered and recycled." Maximizing material circularity is not restricted to plastics. There are more material streams to close the loop on, such as metals and wood. "We must pay equal attention to these recyclables to support reaching the EU's climate neutrality goals set for 2050", said Tom Eng, SVP Head of Recycling. For example, the demand for aluminum is expected to grow by 40% by 2050, a challenge for aluminum producers with limited production capacities in Europe. The good news is that recycled aluminum plays a critical role on the way to a decarbonized world and supports producers' quest to increase recycled content and their environmental commitments. A similar scenario can be observed in the wood sector. Particleboard manufacturers are looking for a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to source materials of which availability is currently limited and that with sky-rocketing prices. Using recycled materials in the production of wood-based or metal-based materials help producers to overcome these challenges while reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and resource depletion. "If we leverage the power of intelligent technologies and closely work with the industry, we can turn waste into value and reduce the dependency on primary materials. Recycling is a key climate mitigator and energy-efficient route to go when supporting a sustainable transition, keeping materials in continuous use. Whatever it takes to close the loop, we will get there", finished Eng. About TOMRA TOMRA Recycling designs and manufactures sensor-based sorting technologies for the global recycling and waste management industry to transform resource recovery and create value in waste. The company was the first to develop advanced waste and metals sorting applications use high capacity near infrared (NIR) technology to extract the most value from resources. To date, more than 8,200 systems have been installed in 100 countries worldwide. TOMRA Recycling is a division of TOMRA Group. TOMRA was founded in 1972 and follows the vision to lead the resource revolution to transform how the planet's resources are obtained, used and reused to enable a world without waste. The company's other business divisions comprise TOMRA Food, TOMRA Mining and TOMRA Collection.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

Schneider launches "Pledge to Plan” for shippers to reduce carbon emissions

Schneider | August 01, 2022

Schneider a premier multimodal provider of transportation, intermodal and logistics services is hosting its Transportation Sustainability Summit in Long Beach, California, this week where the company will unveil to customers the “Pledge to Plan”, a process to support shippers in preparing their transportation strategy to meet the sustainability goals defined by their organization. “We are working together to understand, measure and reduce scope 3 emissions. We continue to advise customers on how the carbon footprint associated with transportation and supply chain fits into their overarching emissions reduction goals. We must challenge ourselves to pursue a more sustainable future by influencing those that we work with within the industry.” Schneider Senior Vice President of Van Truckload John Bozec As companies are becoming increasingly aware of the environmental issues around them, achieving sustainability in the supply chain is a critical corporate goal touching almost every industry. As a leader in the transportation and logistics industry, Schneider is proud to demonstrate how the organization continues to reduce its own environmental impact while leveraging knowledge and expertise to support customers across the supply chain in creating efficiencies. “No one sector is the answer to sustainability. Collaboration is the key to making meaningful change and reducing carbon emissions throughout the supply chain,” said Bozec. Schneider’s Transportation Sustainability Summit is the first-of-its-kind event for shippers to hear from industry experts on the acceleration of sustainability across transportation, alongside discussion of key trends and solutions that are leading the charge, such as electrification. Customers at the summit will receive a closeup look at Freightliner’s eCascadia, the manufacturer’s electric Class 8 truck. Schneider is planning to add 62 eCascadias to its southern California intermodal operations in late 2022/early 2023. “The scaling of zero-emission vehicles is a critical component of reaching our goal to reduce carbon emissions by 7.5% per mile by 2025 and by 60% per mile by 2035,” said Bozec. “Schneider is excited to be at the forefront of this pivotal evolution in the industry and continue educating the world around us on sustainable transportation opportunities.” About Schneider Schneider is a premier multimodal provider of transportation, intermodal and logistics services. Offering one of the broadest portfolios in the industry, Schneider’s solutions include Regional and Long-Haul Truckload, Expedited, Dedicated, Bulk, Intermodal, Brokerage, Warehousing, Supply Chain Management, Port Logistics and Logistics Consulting. With nearly $5.6 billion in annual revenue, Schneider has been safely delivering superior customer experiences and investing in innovation for over 85 years. The company’s digital marketplace, Schneider FreightPower®, is revolutionizing the industry giving shippers access to an expanded, highly flexible capacity network and provides carriers with unmatched access to quality drop-and-hook freight – Always Delivering, Always Ahead.

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Spotlight

The use and adoption of digital technologies has increased significantly in the last 12 months. Yet, there are still a lot of chemical companies that do not have a clear strategy on how to leverage the significant business benefits provided by the rapidly arising new technologies. Learn in this thought paper how to get on the road to digitalization!

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