Degradation of new biodegradable plastic materials in the Baltic Sea marine environment and assessment of associated environmental risk (UBINAM)


Plastic litter pollution of marine environments is a widely recognized environmental problem. The plastic pollution ultimately stems from extensive and ever-increasing use of plastic materials and their unintentional transport to the environment. Plastic packaging from consumer products is one of the prevalent sources of marine plastic litter.

Bio-based and biodegradable materials as substitutes for petrochemical plastic materials have been presented as one solution for marine litter problem. These biomaterials are also central in on-going transition towards bio- and circular economies. The current extent of bio-based and biodegradable materials use is however not known nor their real degradation rates in the marine environment.

The project studies microbial communities responsible for biomaterial degradation and absorption of harmful substances in the natural environment of the Baltic Sea. © Veijo Kinnunen

SYKE Marine Research Centre and Centre for Sustainable Production and Consumption are responsible for project realization. The project has three commercial partners; Plastiroll, Sulapac and Paptic. Biodegradation of novel bio-based and biodegradable materials produced by partner companies will be studied in laboratory and in the marine environment. Also, common commercially available bio-based and biodegradable materials used in consumer product packaging will be studied.

Published 2017-12-05 at 13:23, updated 2017-12-05 at 14:51

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