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RE: Pollution free chemicals?



I am SURE you will get an ear-full on this!  I have already seen some of
the replies.  I offer this perspective:

It is incumbent upon Industry to begin minimizing impacts on the
biosphere.  This includes the extraction of non-renewable resources such
as petroleum.  Will plants become the source for all of the oil we do
not suck from the earth?  I think not.  However, developing closed loop
systems to insure that resources, once extracted, can be reused is
extremely realistic.

Do we have the know-how and commitment to get to this point? Yes.  Take
a look at Ray Anderson, CEO and his vision for Interface Flooring
Systems (www.ifsia.com).  This is a 1.1 Billion $ /year producer of
industrial carpets that has committed to become a "zero-impact
sustainable producer".  How?  Through closed loop product use - they
will recycle used carpet to reclaim the petroleum feedstock and re-use
it.  Check them out in the upcoming issue of Fast Company Magazine
(http://www.fastcompany.com) - Issue #14 will be on the web soon.

To the point of your friend's question, Industry does continue to expand
its use of plant materials in industrial production.  Our company is one
of the largest importers of a plant derivative that has become a hugely
popular industrial solvent.  However, we do not think it likely that
plant feedstock will replace inorganic feedstock but rather a completely
different orientation to what we produce, how we produce it and how we
reuse it.

Bill Green
bgreen@ecolink.com
www.ecolink.com

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Pat Gallagher [SMTP:PAT_GALLAGHER@nmenv.state.nm.us]
> Sent:	Monday, March 23, 1998 12:07 PM
> To:	p2tech@great-lakes.net
> Subject:	Pollution free chemicals?
> 
> Dear P2 techers:
> 
> A friend of mine sent me this email message and not being a chemist, I
> couldn't answer.  How realistic is this future projection?
> 
> The latest issue of the Use Less Stuff Report states that the editors
> of Chemical and Engineering News have predicted that 25 years from now
> plants (green ones, not factories) will become the main source of oil
> and plastics and green  chemistry and similar technologies will
> eliminate pollution from industry. Virtually no pollution will come
> from chemical plants.  Do you think this is a fair prediction? 
> 
> Just curious, this is interesting to me.
> 
> Pat Gallagher
> NM P2