GM, Steelcase see a web of opportunity in the circular economy

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Slashing corporate waste and upping investment in reuse is a big market opening — and one that could unlock new supply chain value and job opportunities at companies that can get out ahead.

Renewable Plastic Can Be Created From Pine Needle Waste

Read the full story at Seeker.

That pine fresh scent in the air actually smells like the future of plastics.

A team of chemists in England has figured out a way to produce a renewable plastic from pine needle waste, potentially replacing a type that’s currently made from crude oil. In order to do it, they turned to the chemical called pinene that gives pine trees their delicious smell.

Pinene is a naturally derived organic compound known as a terpene, and the paper industry generates a bunch of it as a waste product. Chemists at the University of Bath converted the chemical into a polymer using a four-step process. The team was led by Matthew Davidson, director of the Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies, and they published their results in the journal Polymer Chemistry.

Superior soap molecule from renewable sources wins top Dow SISCA prize

Read the full story from the University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment.

A team that created a soap molecule made from renewable materials has won the $10,000 first prize in the Dow Sustainability Innovation Student Challenge Award competition held Dec. 6 at the University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment in St. Paul.

New Higg Module Empowers Apparel, Footwear, Textile Producers to Design Impacts Out of Products

Read the full story from Sustainable Brands.

The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) today launches the Higg Index Design and Development Module (DDM). Along with the release last month of its updated Higg Materials Sustainability Index (MSI) – a cradle-to-gate scoring tool that measures and communicates the environmental performance of thousands of materials used in creating apparel, footwear and home textile products – the DDM is the latest tool in the Higg arsenal aimed at empowering product designers and developers to make sustainable choices at the earliest stage of apparel, footwear and textile prototype design.

Taxing coffee cups is not the answer: here’s why

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Copying the 5p bag tax model with coffee cups is unlikely to work. Instead the onus should be on designing new cups and improved recycling.

Modern life is rubbish: we don’t need all this packaging

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Companies and individuals have a duty to recycle everything possible and to create and use more sustainable packaging.

How Smart Design Can Solve the E-Waste Challenge

Read the full story in Triple Pundit.

Global concern about the mountains of e-waste generated every year has been rising for quite some time – and with good reason: In 2014, the United Nations estimated that humans produced 41.8 million metric tons of electronic waste. That’s 92 billion pounds – and even though IT products made up just 7 percent of that waste, that still represents almost 6.5 billion pounds of waste our industry generated in a single year.

There are no easy solutions to the many enmeshed challenges of e-waste, but by designing for reuse, repair, refurbishing and recycling, we can make real progress.