How technology is weaning the world from plastics

Plastic is everywhere. It is convenient, versatile, and long-lasting. However, it also causes significant waste and pollution problems. In addition to waste building up in the environment, plastic also contributes to climate change, due to heavy dependence on fossil fuels and fossil-based feedstock.

About the author

Gert-Jan Gruter is the Chief Technology Officer at Avantium.

Every year, more than 400 million tons of plastic are produced worldwide, and packaging constitutes a third of this. COVID-19 has added to the problem, as disposable masks, personal protective equipment (PPE), and single-use products have been necessary to protect key workers and maintain hygiene. At the current rate we’re going, there will be more plastics in the sea than fish by 2050.

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