Plastics from Trees
Is the chemistry safer? We’re excited about displacing fossil fuels as the feedstocks for plastics. Recent research in the UK demonstrates that plastics can be made out of chemicals extracted from lignin – a hydrocarbon that provides structural support in trees and other plants. As a wood products industry waste product, lignin could be an abundant and low-cost source material for bioplastics. As always our questions are, what are the chemicals being made from lignin? And are they safer than the existing plastics’ chemistries?