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Next generation performance cotton on show at OR – Next generation cotton

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Next generation performance cotton on show at OR

Invista’s Cordura brand and Cotton Incorporated are continuing to collaborate with the debut of woven and knit blended performance natural fabrics featuring specialty moisture managing TransDRY and STORM COTTON technologies from Cotton Incorporated.

Next generation cotton The technologies combine the long-lasting durability of Cordura fibre and the comfort of cotton. The state-of-art, quick-dry performance fabrics are the latest additions to the portfolio of fabrics based on intimate blend Cordura Nyco fabric technology. The collaboration is another milestone in the Cordura brand’s 50th anniversary celebration and will debut at Summer Outdoor Retailer Show in Salt Lake City next week (Cordura brand Booth No.3 9212 and Cotton Incorporated Booth No. 38037).

More than two in three consumers (67%) say performance features are important in their clothing purchase decisions according to the Cotton Incorporated 2016 U.S. Activewear Study.

“Continuing with the theme of innovation through collaboration in our 50th anniversary year, we are thrilled to debut an exciting next chapter in our ‘performance naturals’ collaboration with the talented team at Cotton Incorporated,” said Cindy McNaull, global Cordura brand and marketing director.

“When you combine Cordura brand durability with the hidden science of TransDRY and Storm Cotton technologies, ‘the fabric of our lives’ seamlessly takes on a whole dimension of long lasting comfort.”

New jersey knits, fleece fabrics and concept pieces from the Cotton Incorporated development team, as well as woven fabrics featuring the TransDRY and Storm Cotton technologies from Cordura brand authorized mills – Artistic Milliners and Chia Her – will be on display at both booths. These fabrics are designed for use in a variety of applications including activewear, outdoor gear and workwear.

“Cotton Incorporated’s technology innovations add performance and functionality to the natural comfort of cotton, while the incorporation integration of Cordura gives fabrics an additional dimension of durability and increased strength, enhancing cotton’s ability to perform in the outdoor and active markets,” says David Earley, senior director for Supply Chain Marketing at Cotton Incorporated.  “For example, we saw the tear strength of some of our woven fabric developments increase by more than 50 percent with inclusion of the Cordura fibre in the blend.”

Cotton Incorporated’s TransDRY Technology

TransDRY technology for cotton is a patented, high-performance moisture management application, that allows fabrics to “wick” and spread perspiration as well as or better than high-tech synthetics, without losing the natural comfort and softness of cotton.

TransDRY technology is applied to cotton yarns reducing their ability to absorb water.

As a result, TransDRY fabrics are engineered to dry faster than untreated cotton to help keep fabrics from becoming over-saturated during physical activity.

Cotton Incorporated’s Storm Cotton Technology

Storm Cotton technology offers breathable water-repellent protection from rain and snow, whilst maintaining the natural comfort of cotton.

Storm Cotton is a finish applied to cotton fibre that effectively repels liquids and still allows for moisture vapor to pass through the fabric so it can move away from the body and dissipate into the environment naturally – helping keep the wearer more cool and comfortable.

Because this special finish minimizes the amount of water that a cotton fabric can absorb, garments made with Storm Cotton technology are engineered to dry much faster than those made with untreated cotton which helps to minimize the amount of time and energy required for laundering.

www.cordura50years.com/CottonInc.

US starts antidumping probe on polyester staple fiber from S Korea, Taiwan – US polyester staple fiber

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US starts antidumping probe on polyester staple fiber from S Korea, Taiwan

Singapore (Platts)

The US has begun antidumping investigations into imports of low melt polyester staple fiber from South Korea and Taiwan, the Department of Commerce said earlier this week.

US polyester staple fiber  The alleged dumping margins were estimated at 39.24-52.23% for South Korea and 28.47-73.21% for Taiwan.

A petition from Nan Ya Plastics Corp. America was filed on June 27 and investigations began on July 17, the DOC said.

The International Trade Commission is scheduled to make its preliminary determinations on or before August 11, it added.

If the ITC findings are positive, the DOC will continue the investigation and announce its decision on December 4.

“If the ITC’s determinations are negative, the investigations will be terminated,” the DOC said.

In 2016, imports of low melt PSF from South Korea were 63,086 mt and 27,243 mt from Taiwan, it added.

–Clement Choo, clement.choo@spglobal.com
–Edited by E Shailaja Nair, shailaja.nair@spglobal.com

A circular approach to bioeconomy: an opportunity to decarbonise the economy and reconnect it with society – Circular bioeconomy

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A circular approach to bioeconomy: an opportunity to decarbonise the economy and reconnect it with society

Circular bioeconomy

 

Circular bioeconomy

Catia Bastioli

a circular approach to bioeconomy

Based and adapted from “Innovazione e infrastrutture della bioeconomia per riconnettere

economia e società”, lectio magistralis by Catia Bastioli on the occasion of conferral of her

Honorary Degree in Materials Engineering by the University of Palermo, Department of

Civil, Environmental, Aerospace and Materials Engineering

© 2017, Catia Bastioli

© 2017, Edizioni Ambiente

Via Natale Battaglia 10, 20127 Milano

www.edizioniambiente.it

tel. 02.45487277, fax 02.45487333

cover: Mauro Panzeri

infographics: Michela Lazzaroni

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted

in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying,

recording or any medium, without written permission given by the publisher.

ISBN 978-88-6627-221-2

Printed in May 2017 at GECA Srl,

San Giuliano Milanese (Milan), Italy

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Polypropylene recycling venture launches $120 million project – Polypropylene recycling project

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Polypropylene recycling venture launches $120 million project

 by Jared Paben

Polypropylene recycling project An innovation developed by Procter & Gamble to bolster polypropylene recovery is being put into action, with construction of an Ohio facility beginning today.

A startup called PureCycle Technologies this morning broke ground on a plant in Ironton, Ohio, which is approximately 130 miles from P&G’s Cincinnati headquarters. It will be located at the site of a recently closed Dow Chemical Co. facility.

PureCycle has unveiled technology that it says is capable of generating recycled PP with virgin-like properties, and it could help move contaminated and dark-colored polypropylene streams into higher-value applications. The company licenses the process from P&G, a consumer-products heavyweight that currently uses more than a half a million tons of virgin PP a year.

Investments for the PureCycle project in Ohio are expected to total at least $120 million, a company spokeswoman confirmed. Much of the funding appears to be coming through bonds from local governments.

The first step will be to build a feedstock evaluation unit, followed in the next few years by a commercial-scale PureCycle facility.

“This technology, which can remove virtually all contaminants and colors from used plastic, has the capacity to revolutionize the plastics recycling industry,” Kathy Fish, P&G’s chief technology officer, stated in a press release.

‘Very elegant technology solution’

Investment firm Innventure is a key bridge between P&G and PureCycle. A firm dedicated to commercializing new technologies, Innventure launched PureCycle to implement P&G’s PP-recycling technology.

P&G’s recycled-content goal is to double its use of recycled resins in its packaging between 2010 and 2020. According to its latest sustainability report, it is 30 percent of the way toward meeting that goal.

While speaking at the 2016 Plastics Recycling conference, Steve Sikra from P&G said his company uses about 550,000 tons of virgin PP each year but continues to look for recycled PP that meets company specifications.

In an effort to open up the range and volume of recovered PP that could be recycled into P&G’s packaging, a polymer scientist at the company developed a “very elegant technology solution to purify waste-stream polypropylene,” Mike Otworth, CEO of Innventure, said in an interview with Plastics Recycling Update.

P&G approached Innventure with an offer to license the technology and sell into the marketplace the resulting recycled PP.

“We felt that it had a lot of upsides, both in terms of market potential and potential to do good for the environment,” Otworth said, describing the technology as a “purification process.” It does not involve depolymerization, he said.

“There’s no real chemical transformation that goes on,” he said. “It’s a largely physical process.”

Inks and additives are removed in multiple stages. The plastic is heated and the viscosity of the molten resin is varied in a way that creates conditions that are advantageous for efficient purification, he said.

The result is PP with near-virgin-plastic qualities, according to those involved in the project. The process removes odor, contaminants and most color, according to the press release.

Employing 15 people, the PureCycle facility now under construction will serve as a feedstock evaluation unit (FEU), testing a variety of streams to help PureCycle determine what mix to buy to meet end-user requirements.

The press release noted the FEU, slated to begin operation in January, will also assess PureCycle’s environmental impact.

Following the feedstock evaluation unit, company officials plan to open a commercial-scale production facility in late 2020 at the southern Ohio site. That facility will employ over 60 people and is slated to produce 80 million pounds per year from an input of 100 million pounds.

A need in the market

Because of the high costs and the limited ability of many mechanical recycling methods to manage multi-colored and heavily contaminated streams, post-consumer PP is often recycled into items such as car batteries, planters and garbage cans, which are often black products.

Outputs of PureCycle’s process can be used in higher-value applications, project leaders said. No U.S. Food and Drug Administration letter of non-objection has yet been obtained to allow PureCycle PP in food and drink packaging, but Otworth said he believes the process yields recycled plastic that could be used in those markets.

“The ability to provide food-contact-grade material is certainly important,” he said.

The PureCycle recycled PP can be sold at around the same price as virgin plastic, which is important because customers don’t want their costs to rise, Otworth said. He wouldn’t comment on whether the technology could be applied to other resins.

The Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) has identified 1 billion pounds of recycled PP demand in North America, with nearly three-quarters of that for high-quality material.

Steve Alexander, APR’s executive director, said his group is viewing the announcement with optimism. He also described P&G as one of the pioneers of plastics recycling over the years.

“We’re excited about this,” Alexander said. “We’re hopeful that technology will help address some of that unmet demand that is in the marketplace for recycled polypropylene.”

PureCycle is already looking at a global feedstock acquisition strategy, even though production scale is still a few years away, Otworth said. Customers will probably include a mix of brand owners such P&G, who are buying resin for their own use, and molding operations supplying products to a variety of customers.

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Analyst: Technology Gains In US Shale Ramp Up Production, Pressure – Technology US Shale

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Analyst: Technology Gains In US Shale Ramp Up Production, Pressure

Technology US Shale Technology is helping boost production and lower costs for U.S. shale players, but analysts say rising volumes are pressuring oil prices. (Source: Shutterstock.com)

An enhanced completion design was behind Devon Energy Inc.’s (NYSE: DVN) “record-setting” Meramac well in the Stack play that flowed at a peak 24-hour rate of 6,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d), mostly oil.

The Oklahoma City-based company said it expects to recover more than 2 MMboe during the lifetime of its Privott 17-H well, which was drilled with a 10,000-ft lateral. Key to the company’s success was stimulated rock volume around the wellbore with a new proprietary completion design.

Devon COO Tony Vaughn called the achievement another example of the company’s upstream technology leadership. “Looking ahead, we expect to continue to build operational momentum in the Stack as we transition our activity to multizone development drilling that will drive additional efficiency gains and maximize the value of our resource,” Vaughn said in a July 11 statement.

Such strides build confidence in sustained U.S. oil production growth, aided in large part by technology gains. Operators are using technologies such as predictive analytics, microseismic and far-field and near-wellbore diverters to pump more proppant for longer laterals and drill deeper wells.

However, as operators use these technology advancements to increase their odds of surviving a sub-$50/bbl world, the industry’s innovation is also putting pressure on oil prices, analysts say.

“The use of advanced analytics along with other technology enhancements is accelerating oil supply-cost reductions. Precision targeting allows E&Ps to land laterals in better rock,” analysts at Barclays said in a note issued earlier in July. “This innovation, combined with more intensive completions, results in better wells, lower costs and expanding inventory.”

Barclays added that it believes U.S. oil production growth will “surprise to the upside again.”

“The impact of technological innovation on oil and gas drilling is often overlooked by E&P investors,” the firm said. “We believe improved well results, flattish well costs [per lateral foot] and rising per-well productivity will lead U.S. oil volumes higher and put downward pressure on long-term oil prices.”

The sentiment is backed by thoughts that investors may focus more on technology development, and companies—seeing the gains of its peers—will strive to replicate the successes, come close or do better.

Barclays also highlighted how Devon and EOG Resources Inc. (NYSE: EOG) have both improved well results.

“Devon recently showed that its well results have improved more than 450% since 2012 and EOG has included an illustration in its investor materials that show a near tripling in production per well [adjusted for lateral lengths] in the Delaware Wolfcamp since 2013. While industry drilling data is not as dramatic as these examples we note that the leaders in implementing emerging technology will be emulated by peers in the near future,” Barclays said.

EOG has shifted focus to its premium assets, wells capable of earning at least a 30% direct after-tax rate of return at $40 crude oil and $2.50 natural gas prices. Its strategy appears to be meeting expectations, but the company is still working to improve.

Longer laterals, precision targeting and advanced completions helped to push EOG’s first-quarter 2017 crude oil volumes to a 315,000 bbl/d company record. The company has said that applying unconventional techniques to conventional reservoirs could result in additional growth.

“EOG has articulated its strategy well and has shown field-level well results about 2x that of peers while DVN has more than quintupled production rates over the past four to five years and delivered corporate average production rates results about 50% above the ‘average’ large producer,” Barclays said.

Higher production rates are pushing future estimates higher.

Just this week the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said it expects the seven major shale basins it tracks to produce 5.472 MMbbl/d in July and 5.585 MMbbl/d in August. Gas production is also forecast to rise, moving from about 52 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in July to about 52.9 Bcf/d forecast for August.

Oil production from the Permian is expected to jump by 64Mbbl/d in August to about 2.535 MMbbl/d, while gas production in the Marcellus—the top gas play in the nation—is forecast to rise by 201 MMcf/d to about 19.8 Bcf/d, according to information from the EIA’s latest Drilling Productivity report.

The EIA forecast U.S. oil production to average about 9.3 MMbbl/d in 2017, up from the estimated 8.9 MMbbl/d in 2016. Production is expected to continue growing next year, possibly reaching about 9.9 MMbbl/d.

Barclays estimated a 10% improvement in per-well production rates would increase growth further.

Growth has come despite oil prices remaining below $50/bbl. The morning of July 20 Brent futures were at $49.62/bbl, while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $47.01/bbl.

“While we expect second-quarter earnings calls to indicate that E&Ps continue to execute well, we continue to be concerned about subpar full-cycle returns on new investments, the potentially bearish impact of rising U.S. oil volumes on oil prices and extended valuations,” Barclays said. “We remain negative on the sector.”

Barclays lowered its WTI oil price used in its E&P forecasts to between $48/bbl to $52.20/bbl for 2017-2018.

Velda Addison can be reached at vaddison@hartenergy.com.

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Global plastic waste totals 4.9 billion tonnes – Global plastic waste

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Global plastic waste totals 4.9 billion tonnes


First global analysis of all plastics ever mass produced projects total plastic waste will reach 12 billion tonnes by 2050. Tim Wallace reports.


Global plastic waste
More than half of all the plastics ever made are now landfill or polluting the environment.
Jenna Jambeck / University of Georgia

Past epochs of human development – the stone age, the bronze age, the iron age – are known by the dominant materials used to make tools. If future archaeologists stick to this rule they may well dub our time, based on the artefacts now being deposited in the sedimentary record, the plastic age – with the tools being throw-away items serving short-term convenience.

“Plastic waste is now so ubiquitous in the environment that it has been suggested as a geological indicator of the proposed Anthropocene era,” according to what is credited as the first global analysis of all mass-produced plastics ever made.

Global plastic waste
Cumulative plastic waste generation and disposal (in million metric tons). Solid lines show historical data from 1950 to 2015; dashed lines show projections of historical trends to 2050.
Geyer, Jambeck, Law, ‘Science Advances’, July 2017

The authors of the paper “Production, use, and fate of all plastics ever made”, published in Science Advances, are Roland Geyer of the University of California Santa Barbara, Jenna Jambeck of the University of Georgia, and Kara Lavender Law of the Sea Education Association in Massachusetts.

Their research calculates that 8.3 billion metric tonnes of plastic has been produced in the 65 years since the beginning of the 1950s – the decade in which mass production of plastics began. About 60% of that, or 4.9 billion tonnes, has already ended up in landfill or polluting the environment.

If current production, use and waste management trends continue, the study projects the total amount of plastic dumped in landfill or polluting the natural environments by 2050 will be 12 billion tonnes – though the paper does note that a material flow analysis of this kind requires multiple assumptions or simplifications, so projections are subject to uncertainty and cannot necessarily be regarded as solid predictions.

Global plastic waste
Product lifetime distributions for the eight industrial use sectors plotted as log-normal probability distribution functions.
Geyer, Jambeck, Law, ‘Science Advances’, July 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Because none of the commonly used plastics are biodegradable, they accumulate rather than decompose. “Thus, near-permanent contamination of the natural environment with plastic waste is a growing concern,” states the new paper. Plastic debris is now ubiquitous in marine environments, while contamination of freshwater systems and terrestrial habitats is also increasingly reported, “as is environmental contamination with synthetic fibres”.

Bio-based or biodegradable plastics, with a current global production capacity of only 4,000 tonnes, were excluded from the analysis.

Global plastic waste
Global primary plastics waste generation (in million metric tons) according to industrial use sector from 1950 to 2015.
Geyer, Jambeck, Law, ‘Science Advances’, July 2017

The authors note that though plastic recycling has increased greatly since the 1980s (when it was virtually non-existent) its capacity to reduce future plastic waste generation depends on displacing primary plastic production; otherwise it simply delays rather than avoids final disposal.

The only certain and proven way to stop produced plastic ending up in landfill is “thermal destruction” – which has historically meant incineration with variable environmental and health impacts depending on design, management and emission controls. Emerging technologies, such as pyrolysis (extracting fuel from plastic waste) and biodigestion (using polymer-digesting organisms), offer some hope of mitigating the amount of waste in the future.

In a given year, about three-quarters of plastic produced globally is discarded, the authors’ reported numbers suggest. (The available data, they acknowledge, is limited.) While some plastic products do last decades, the biggest use of plastics is in packaging, where actual use can be measured in weeks, days, hours or even seconds.

Global plastic waste
Global primary plastics waste generation (in million metric tons) according to polymer type from 1950 to 2015.
Geyer, Jambeck, Law, ‘Science Advances’, July 2017

Europe has achieved the highest plastic recycling rate (30%), followed by China (25%), with the United States lagging behind at about 9%. Waste management information for 52 other countries for 2014 indicates the rest of the world has recycling and incineration rates similar to the US.

The analysis shows plastic waste by sector use, and by polymer type.

“The growth of plastics production in the past 65 years has substantially outpaced any other manufactured material,” the authors conclude. “The same properties that make plastics so versatile in innumerable applications – durability and resistance to degradation – make these materials difficult or impossible for nature to assimilate. Thus, without a well-designed and tailor-made management strategy for end-of-life plastics, humans are conducting a singular uncontrolled experiment on a global scale, in which billions of metric tons of material will accumulate across all major terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems on the planet.”

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LyondellBasell technologies to be used for Chinese petrochemical complex – LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical

LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical 

LyondellBasell technologies to be used for Chinese petrochemical complex

LyondellBasell technologies Chinese petrochemical

Petrochemicals firm Liaoning Bora has selected LyondellBasell’s PP and PE technologies for three new plants, which will be constructed in its new petrochemical complex in Liaoning Province, China.

The facility will include two polypropylene units with a combined annual capacity of 600,000 tonnes, which will use LyondellBasell’s Spherizone and Spheripol PP process technologies. The polypropylene plants will be complemented with a 350,000-tonne HDPE plant operating on the Hostalen ACP process technology.

Dan Coombs, executive vice president of Global Manufacturing, Refining, Projects and Technology at LyondellBasell, said: “As the global leader in polyolefins technology, LyondellBasell offers differentiating processes that enable our customers in this region to remain competitive and responsive to market dynamics. We are pleased that new petrochemical facilities in Asia are selecting our technologies to distinguish themselves in their respective markets.”

Vice President of Liaoning, Bora Zhao Jiandong, added: “LyondellBasell has a strong reputation in polymer process technologies. Employing these in our new petrochemical complex enables us to produce high quality products reliably and economically.”

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