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This week's best innovations could drive significant change across the fashion, aviation and agricultural sectors

Carbon-negative batteries and food waste plastics: The best green innovations of the week

A number of eye-catching and potentially transformational innovations have emerged that could help businesses and nations accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, resource-efficient economy. Here, edie rounds-up six of the best.

Unlocking the Fourth Industrial Revolution for the planet

Back in 1970, at the dawn of the modern environmental movement, American Futurist Alvin Toffler coined the term 'Future Shock'. Toffler highlighted that the late-20th Century was experiencing a phenomenon unique in human history in which technology was changing faster than people. This in turn led to widespread discomfort and confusion as well as frequent social and economic upheaval.

Patel suggests that packagers, retailers and waste management organisations should work holistically to develop a singular brief for packaging

Are businesses thinking about the SDGs when targeting plastics?

The recent wave of pledges against single-use plastic could lead to unintended consequences due to a lack of cross-sector alignment that is failing to examine the role of packaging in delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The new-style Lego elements are made from polyethylene – a soft, durable and flexible plastic that can now be made with ethanol extracted from sugar cane material

First plant-based plastic Lego pieces to go on sale

The first Lego pieces made from plant-based plastic sourced from sugar cane will go on sale this year, the company has announced.

Compost, degrade, recycle: the truth about plastic bags

There is obviously a lot of confusion around the materials plastic shopping bags are made from and the compostability, biodegradability and recyclability of them.

Reebok is already planning on composting the footwear once its older to help grow the next range of shoes

Reebok to 'grow' bio-based footwear

Fitness giant Reebok has announced a new product development initiative which will lead to the launch of footwear made from "things that grow" later this year.

The firms will aim to introduce 5,000 metric tonnes of bio-based plastic to the global market

Danone and Nestlé Waters pursue 100% bio-based plastic bottle rollout

Multi-national food company Danone has teamed up with the bottled water division of the Nestlé Group and a Californian start-up company to launch a new alliance aimed at commercialising 100% bio-based plastic bottles.

Carbon fibre composite, a combination of carbon fibres and a polymer matrix, is growing rapidly in transport and renewable energy applications

How can we deliver a circular economy for novel materials?

The UK Government must embed circular economy thinking within its industrial strategy and place a particular focus on encouraging the recycling and recovery of 'novel' materials such as bioplastics and carbon fibre, a new report has claimed.

Almost half of all plastic waste in the EU is still landfilled, reflecting an urgent need for more bio-based innovations to drive a new plastics economy

Bioplastics industry continues to expand despite low oil prices

The bioplastics industry is continuing to see stable growth despite falling oil prices, representing a positive shift in business attitudes towards manufacturing low-carbon, resource-efficient products. and a lack of stronger political support to realise the potential of bio-based materials in Europe.

While Starbucks has made moves to reduce waste, questions remain over the recyclability of paper cups - which are sealed with a polyethylene (plastic) lining on the interior

Starbucks responds to War on Waste with 'bring your own cup' discount

Following a wave of intense criticism about its lack of action on the circular economy, coffee shop chain Starbucks will trial a 50p discount on its drinks if consumers bring their own cup, in an attempt to curb the rising issue of coffee cup recycling.


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