Whether it’s a wine filter for the alcohol production industry or everyday water and sewage treatment, the goal of a good filter is always the same – to let through what you want to keep and extract that which you don’t. Being able to dispose of those filtered out pieces is extremely important for environmental minded businesses.
One of the biggest product issues affecting the environment is the use of microbeads in beauty products, which take hundreds of years to break down once they’ve made their way into our oceans. However, scientists have discovered what they think is a major breakthrough, creating microbeads which are biodegradable according to Irish News.
These plastic micro beads will be made from cellulose which breaks up rapidly into environmentally friendly sugars. It’s hoped that many cosmetic and beauty brands will embrace these new microbeads and choose to use in their products.
Most micro plastic don’t break down easily and due to their size aren’t able to be removed from sewage filtration systems. This causes harm to marine animals such as fish, mammals and birds who ingest the tiny particles which are only 0.5mm in size.
The new plastic beads are created by filtering the cellulose through tiny holes in a membrane to create circular droplets.
It’s estimated that about 8 million tonnes of problem plastic enter our oceans each year despite pressure from various environmental organisations who tirelessly campaign for change could now see their wishes come true.
Timing couldn’t be better for businesses, as many governments plan to put a ban on the use of micro plastics unless biodegradable. It’s thought that this new biodegradable cellulose plastic could be used to help in reducing waste from other materials such as paper too.