Economically Viable Drop-In Replacement Chemicals
Written by Blue Marble Biomaterials for Hydrocarbon Engineering
In a world where oil is king, a burgeoning industry of renewable speciality chemicals derived from biomass waste is quietly, yet steadily, leading a revolution. Aside from fuels, oil is a building block for chemicals used to make plastic containers, fabrics, cosmetics, flavours and fragrances, solvents, detergents, adhesives, etc. In fact, 95% of all consumer products, including food and beverages, contain ingredients derived from crude oil.
But while the amount of petroleum reserves remaining in the earth’s crust is disputed, what we do know is that oil is becoming more difficult and expensive to find and extract at a time when demand for it has never been higher. What happens when we reach the point where it is simply not viable to use petroleum and petroleum-based products? How will we create all the products we need to live and thrive?
That is an issue that the biotechnology and chemical engineering industries have been studying for decades, successfully piloting innovative and revolutionary new technologies to curb our reliance on crude oil. Some of the most exciting work is taking place in the speciality chemical arena, where renewable and sustainable drop-in replacement chemicals are showing tremendous progress, application, and market viability.
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