Current Recycling News and Events

Current Recycling News and Events, Recycling News Articles.
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More sustainable recycling of plastics
Plastics belong to the most widely used materials, and they are vital components of all modern technologies. So far, it has been possible to recycle these valuable materials only to a limited extent. In order to offer novel solutions, chemists of Professor Stefan MeckingĀ“s group at the University of Konstanz developed a more sustainable method for chemically recycling polyethylene-like plastics. The researchers use ''breaking-points'' on a molecular level to disassemble the plastic back to its molecular components. (2021-02-17)

Halt cell recycling to treat cancer
Targeting and changing autophagy, otherwise known as cell recycling, has been linked to helping control or diminish certain cancers. Now, University of Cincinnati researchers have shown that completely halting this process in a very aggressive form of breast cancer may improve outcomes for patients one day. (2021-02-08)

Bioplastics in the sustainability dilemma
Scientists at the University of Bonn (Germany) found that the sustainability of plant-based bioplastics depends largely on the country of origin, its trade relationships and the raw material processed. (2021-02-05)

Molecule from nature provides fully recyclable polymers
Plastics are among the most successful materials of modern times. However, they also create a huge waste problem. Scientists from the University of Groningen and the East China University of Science and Technology (ECUST) in Shanghai produced different polymers from lipoic acid, a natural molecule. These polymers are easily depolymerized under mild conditions. Some 87 percent of the monomers can be recovered in their pure form and re-used to make new polymers of virgin quality. (2021-02-04)

Recycling face masks into roads to tackle COVID-generated waste
Researchers have developed a new road-making material that mixes shredded single-use face masks with processed building rubble. Their analysis shows making just 1km of a 2-lane road with the material would enable 3 million face masks to be recycled and kept out of landfill. (2021-02-02)

A small protein in bacteria overlooked up to now
Researchers identify an essential factor involved in the ordered recycling of phycobilisome light-harvesting structures (2021-01-29)

Princeton team advances new route to chemically recyclable plastics
As the planet's burden of rubber and plastic trash rises unabated, scientists increasingly look to the promise of closed-loop recycling to reduce waste. A team of researchers at Princeton's Department of Chemistry announces the discovery of a new polybutadiene molecule - from a material known for over a century and used to make common products like tires and shoes - that could one day advance this goal through depolymerization. (2021-01-25)

Cargo delivery by polymers
Degradable, bio-based polymers offer options for chemical recycling, and they can be a tool to store and release useful molecules. Scientists have developed a class of sugar-based polymers that are degradable through acid hydrolysis. The researchers also integrated ''cargo'' molecules in the polymer, which are designed to split off after polymer degradation. Degradable, cargo-bearing polymers are important for medical and sensor applications, says the study published in the journal Angewandte Chemie. (2021-01-22)

Researchers link cellular transport pathway to aggressive brain cancer
Researchers at McGill University have identified a new cellular pathway that limits the growth and spread of brain tumors by controlling the recycling of cell surface receptor proteins. The study, which will be published January 14 in the Journal of Cell Biology (JCB), suggests that the pathway, which involves a protein called Rab35, is defective in many patients with glioblastoma and that restoring Rab35's activity could be a new therapeutic strategy for this deadly form of brain cancer. (2021-01-14)

Lead poisoning of children
A remediation and public education effort at an abandoned battery recycling facility in Bangladesh eliminated most lead soil contamination, but levels of the toxic metal in children living near the site did not decrease nearly as much. The discrepancy reveals the scope of other lead exposure sources and the challenge they present to public health. (2021-01-14)

Geologic history written in garnet sand
Syracuse University researchers probe deep secrets of trapped inclusions in garnet sand from Papua New Guinea (2021-01-14)

Flashing plastic ash completes recycling
Rice University's flash graphene process, adapted to convert worthless pyrolyzed plastic ash, could be used to strengthen concrete and toughen plastics used in medicine, energy and packaging applications. (2021-01-13)

Upcycling: new catalytic process turns plastic bags into adhesives
Only a small percentage of plastic bags and other polyethylene packaging is recycled because only low-value products can be made from this waste. UC Berkeley chemists have created a catalytic process that preserves the desirable properties of polyethylene while adding another attribute - stickiness - that increases the value of the recycled product. The adhesive polyethylene could be used to coat wires and metal implants or bond plastic layers. Even latex paint sticks to it. (2020-12-17)

Extracting precious zinc from waste ash
Incineration of solid waste produces millions of tonnes of waste fly ash in Europe each year, that most commonly ends up in landfill. But this ash often contains significant amounts of precious metals, such as zinc. A unique method developed by researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, can now help extract these precious metals, potentially leading to reductions in environmental pollution, landfill and transport. (2020-12-16)

'Peecycling' payoff: Urine diversion shows multiple environmental benefits when used at city scale
Diverting urine away from municipal wastewater treatment plants and recycling the nutrient-rich liquid to make crop fertilizer would result in multiple environmental benefits when used at city scale, according to a new University of Michigan-led study. (2020-12-15)

Electronic waste on the decline, new study finds
A new study, led by a researcher at the Yale School of the Environment's Center for Industrial Ecology and published recently in the Journal of Industrial Ecology, has found that the total mass of electronic waste generated by Americans has been declining since 2015. This surprising finding has ramifications for both how we think about electronic waste's future and for the laws and regulations regarding e-waste recycling, according to the study's authors. (2020-12-01)

Transportation of water into the deep Earth by Al-phase D
Researchers at Ehime University have recently measured the propagation speed of ultrasonic waves in an aluminum-rich hydrous mineral called Al-phase D at pressure conditions relevant to the Earth's deep mantle. Their results suggest that seismic shear anomalies observed locally beneath subduction zones may reveal the presence of hydrous minerals in the uppermost lower mantle, which would have important implications for the Earth's interior because hydrogen affects considerably the physical and chemical properties of mantle minerals. (2020-11-30)

Using a soft crystal to visualize how absorbed carbon dioxide behaves in liquid
A team of scientists has succeeded in visualizing how carbon dioxide (CO2) behaves in an ionic liquid that selectively absorbs CO2. The finding is expected to help develop more efficient methods to capture CO2 in the atmosphere, one of the major factors causing global warming. (2020-11-25)

New solvent-based recycling process could cut down on millions of tons of plastic waste
Multilayer plastic materials are ubiquitous in food and medical supply packaging, particularly since layering polymers can give those films specific properties, like heat resistance or oxygen and moisture control. But despite their utility, those ever-present plastics are impossible to recycle using conventional methods. (2020-11-20)

Using materials efficiently can substantially cut greenhouse gas emissions
Emissions from the production of materials like metals, minerals, woods and plastics more than doubled in 1995 - 2015, accounting for almost one-quarter of all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions worldwide. Material efficiency needs to play a larger role in climate planning, a new report says. (2020-11-18)

Pharmacology - An unconventional ion channel
Scientists at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have identified the first mechanosensitive ion channel to be found in an intracellular vesicle system. It responds to concentration changes within the vesicle, and probably controls the initiation of immune reactions. (2020-11-13)

Environmentally friendly method could lower costs to recycle lithium-ion batteries
A new process for restoring spent cathodes to mint condition could make it more economical to recycle lithium-ion batteries. The process, developed by nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego, is more environmentally friendly than today's methods; it uses greener ingredients, consumes 80 to 90% less energy, and emits about 75% less greenhouse gases. (2020-11-12)

Leaf-cutter bees as plastic recyclers? Not a good idea, say scientists
Scientists have noted instances of leaf-cutter bees using plastic waste to construct their nests and one research group suggested such behavior could be an 'ecologically adaptive trait' and beneficial recycling effort. Utah State University scientist Joseph Wilson says no; such behavior is harmful to the bee's offspring. (2020-11-03)

New study reveals United States a top source of plastic pollution in coastal environments
The United States ranks as high as third among countries contributing to coastal plastic pollution when taking into account its scrap plastic exports as well as the latest figures on illegal dumping and littering in the country. (2020-10-30)

Flash graphene rocks strategy for plastic waste
Rice University scientists advance their technique to make graphene from waste with a focus on plastic. (2020-10-29)

Mythbusting: 5 common misperceptions surrounding the environmental impacts of single-use plastics
Stand in the soda pop aisle at the supermarket, surrounded by rows of brightly colored plastic bottles and metal cans, and it's easy to conclude that the main environmental problem here is an overabundance of single-use containers: If we simply recycled more of them, we'd go a long way toward minimizing impacts. (2020-10-26)

New method for upcycling polyethylene creates value from plastic waste
Using a unique catalyst to molecularly deconstruct polyethylene, the most commonly used form of plastic, researchers present a solvent-free way to transform it into higher-value, widely used chemical compounds. (2020-10-22)

Why can our brains learn and memorize?
The long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) of hippocampal excitatory synapse involved in learning and memory formation in brain have been separately explained, but the molecular mechanism has not been elucidated. The group focused on the competition of exocytosis and endocytosis of AMPA-type glutamate receptors dependent on the number of calcium ions that flow into the postsynaptic neurons, and demonstrated the comprehensive understanding of the LTP and LTD by a large-scale mathematical model simulation. (2020-10-21)

Paper recycling must be powered by renewables to save climate
The study, published in Nature Sustainability, found that greenhouse gas emissions would increase by 2050 if we recycled more paper, as current methods rely on fossil fuels and electricity from the grid. (2020-10-19)

Does science have a plastic problem? Microbiologists take steps to reducing plastic waste
A research group based at the University of Edinburgh's Roslin Institute, developed an approach to reduce plastic waste produced by their lab. They have shared their approach in the journal Access Microbiology, with the hope that other labs will follow suit. (2020-10-15)

The unending waste management challenge - are we at our wits' end?
The doctoral dissertation by Beatrice Obule-Abila (University of Vaasa, Finland) focuses on changing the paradigm of waste management by exploring the adoption of knowledge management framework, developing and deploying more knowledge management tools, systems, and approaches in seeking solutions to the problem of waste: so that waste no longer constitutes a nuisance, but a valuable resource. (2020-10-12)

Lighting the path to recycling carbon dioxide
Combining solar-harvesting materials with carbon-dioxide-consuming microbes could be an efficient way to generate clean fuels. (2020-10-05)

Kang finds keys to control the 'driver of cancer's aggressiveness'
A dangerous protein named SNAI2 helps cancers metastasize and shields cancer from both the immune system and chemotherapy. Worse, SNAI2 is in a family of proteins that are notoriously hard to fight with drugs. But now Princeton University's Yibin Kang and his colleagues have found a way to use the cell's recycling system to control SNAI2, providing a new possibility for treatments. (2020-09-17)

How cigarette butts can be recycled into bricks: a step-by-step plan
Fired-clay bricks with 1% recycled cigarette butt content are as strong as normal bricks and use less energy to produce. Researchers have now developed a detailed industry plan for implementing cigarette butt recycling into bricks at mass scale. (2020-09-16)

Researchers ask: how sustainable is your toothbrush?
Researchers at Trinity College Dublin have examined the sustainability of different models of the most commonly used oral health product - the toothbrush - to ascertain which is best for the planet and associated human health. (2020-09-16)

Human white blood cells use molecular paddles to swim
Human white blood cells, known as leukocytes, swim using a newly described mechanism called molecular paddling, researchers report in the September 15th issue of Biophysical Journal. This microswimming mechanism could explain how both immune cells and cancer cells migrate in various fluid-filled niches in the body, for good or for harm. (2020-09-15)

How to harness the power of biosolids to make hydrogen
New technology uses biosolids to drive the chemical reactions needed to produce hydrogen from biogas. The circular economy approach means all the materials needed for hydrogen production could be sourced on-site at a wastewater treatment plant, without the need for expensive catalysts. (2020-09-14)

Worldwide loss of phosphorus due to soil erosion quantified for the first time
Phosphorus is essential for agriculture, yet this important plant nutrient is increasingly being lost from soils around the world. The primary cause is soil erosion, reports an international research team led by the University of Basel. The study in the journal Nature Communications shows which continents and regions are most strongly affected. (2020-09-11)

Scientists have discovered an environmentally friendly way to transform silicon into nanoparticles
Scientists have developed a new method of silicon recycling. The majority of solar panels that are produced in ever-increasing quantities use silicon. Solar panels that usually have a service life of 25-30 years tend to degrade and produce less electricity over time, making silicon waste recycling a hot-button issue. Converting silicon into silicon oxide nanoparticles answers to silicon waste recycling issues and providing a new source of nanoparticles for various uses in science and industry. (2020-09-08)

Mobile e-shredding may pose risks for workers: bu study
A new Boston University School of Public Health study published in Annals of Work Exposure and Health is the first to evaluate the exposures faced by workers in mobile e-shredding, a new service to securely destroy hard drives, laptops, and other electronics containing confidential information on site. (2020-09-01)

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