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Kaiser Permanente replaces PVC packaging with PET

January 24/2012

(plasticstoday) -- Kaiser Permanente, a huge West Coast health provider, is banning use of PVC in tubing and bags and P&G is replacing PVC packaging in toothbrush containers with PET, which is more easily recyclable.


The irony is that just as widespread conversions out of PVC might really take hold in a few years, PVC could becoming one of the greener materials on the planet. For starters, consider that PVC is the only major volume thermoplastic that is substantially derived (57%) from a non-fossil fuel feedstock. Vinyl chloride monomer is derived from brine, which is industrial-grade salt.

Kaiser Permanente replaces PVC packaging with PET


The other feedstock for polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is ethylene, which can now be made from sugar-derived ethanol in very large quantities in Brazil. Braskem has a huge plant while a Dow Mitsui joint venture is building another world-scale plant.


Solvay Indupa, the Brazilian arm of Belgium-based chemical giant Solvay, has announced plans to use Brazilian sugarcane ethanol as a PVC feedstock to replace naphtha, which has been bought from Middle-Eastern sources.  According to Solvay's Erik De Leye, the project remains in the project stage for now, but a plant of 120,000 tonnes a year is envisioned. That would make PVC a 100% natural material from a polymer point of view.


The typical PVC compound, however, is heavily loaded with chemical additives, most famously plasticizers that impart flexibility. According to Kaiser Permanente, research suggests that long-term exposure to a commonly used plasticizer called DEHP can affect the body's endocrine system, resulting in a variety of hormonal abnormalities, particularly in infants. The European Union has banned some uses of DEHP, such as children's toys.


mrcplast.com

Author:Anna Larionova
Tags:PVC, PET.
Category:General News
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