20.02.2020 - Woodly

The biomaterials renaissance is coming – are you ready?

The fossil fuel era is certain to become only a short footnote in manufacturing history. The biomaterial era? That could be a different story. We’re on the verge of a biomaterial’s renaissance, but for them to truly replace fossil fuels, they have to be sustainably and responsibly sourced from the very beginning. What’s more, we need to be able to trace them from their point of origin and be able to document their end-use, and recyclability and reuse as well.

At Woodly, we’re committed to improving our environmental impact across the entire value chain — from raw materials to the brand itself. That’s why we’ve chosen to use only Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified cellulose as our raw material. As more companies aim to meet their sustainability goals and become more eco-friendly to appease the demands of the consumer, the need for responsibly sourced biomass becomes more important. Overall, it’s the emissions, material and energy efficiency that are key in the sustainability of all materials.

Why FSC certified cellulose? It’s because forests are a source of life. Forests, trees, and bushes promote an environment that relieves stress and provide safe habitats for animals and wildlife. In order to enhance biodiversity and prevent the extinction of wildlife, forests must be managed carefully. FSC certified cellulose is a designation that indicates such. Forests also play a key role in land use. As the population has exploded, the amount of forests has decreased by more than one-third. That’s why reforestation is so important in order to keep the earth in good shape from an environmental perspective. Additionally, afforestation of deserted areas and degraded land are practices that need to be developed and employed further. Degraded land is also a good opportunity for the bio-based plastics and materials industry, as these lands are no longer suitable for food crops but can still be utilized for bio-based raw material production.

Bio-based plastics are made from biomass. This biomass has during the growth of trees, crops, plants and bushes absorbed carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. When biomass is used for plastic production, it stores atmospheric carbon, which helps slow down climate change as long as the material is not incinerated or burned for waste management or energy purposes. When a fossil fuel plastic is burned, the carbon that exists in the product has also been stored, but millions of years ago. When you’re burning bio-based materials, the cycle is much shorter, as the carbon emitted has been absorbed by the material only a year or a few decades ago. Plastics collection, sorting and recycling is still taking its first steps and needs to mature to ensure all valuable materials are maintained in the loop as long as possible. If you are interested in learning more, feel free to contact us!

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