The Urban Taraxagum bicycle tire from Continental has won the German Sustainability Award 2021 in the category “Responsible Design”. The tire is the first series-built bicycle tire made of dandelion rubber. Series production of a tire made of dandelion rubber is an important milestone in Continental’s sustainability strategy. The dandelion... Read more →


Volkswagen Group Logistics will be using certified fuel from vegetable residues for certain new car shipments via marine routes. The fuel is produced from materials such as used oil from restaurants and the food industry. The first car freighter was refueled for the first time with this oil in mid-November... Read more →


Groupe Renault is creating the REFACTORY in Flins, the first European circular economy site dedicated to mobility. By 2030, it will employ more than 3,000 people in dedicated professions. The implementation of this industrial and commercial ecosystem will take place gradually between 2021 and 2024, replacing the production of new... Read more →


Global automotive Tier 1 manufacturer Motherson Group is collaborating with Israeli cleantech company UBQ Materials. The companies are joining efforts to implement the carbon-negative UBQ thermoplastic (earlier post) into auto parts manufactured by Motherson Group for the automotive industry. UBQ is a patented material converted from 100% unsorted household waste,... Read more →


EGC enters trading agreement with Trafigura with the aim to transform the ASM cobalt mining sector in DRC

Entreprise Générale du Cobalt (EGC) signed a trading agreement with Trafigura Pte Ltd. The trading agreement includes the provision of finance by Trafigura to fund the creation of strictly controlled artisanal mining zones, the installation of ore purchasing stations and costs related to the transparent and traceable delivery of cobalt... Read more →


A large number of components in automobiles are made from plastics; these have to meet exacting safety, heat-resistance and quality requirements. That is why, so far, only petroleum-based materials have been suitable for manufacturing plastic components in automobiles that are subjected to particularly intensive wear. Such materials are not recyclable... Read more →


Volkswagen joins “Cobalt for Development” initiative

Volkswagen says that it is actively engaging in improving artisanal cobalt mining conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as well as the living conditions for people in the surrounding communities. Cobalt is an important raw material for the production of electric vehicle batteries. Artisanal mining involves risks to... Read more →


Gruppo Maip, Eastman partner on sustainable polymer automotive materials; bio-based and recycled

Eastman and Gruppo Maip, a leading international plastics formulator and compound producer based in Turin, Italy, will partner to formulate new sustainable polymer solutions for automotive interior applications. This will enable an exclusive portfolio of formulations based on Eastman’s Advanced Circular Recycling technology, offering a range of both bio-based and... Read more →


The Mercedes-Benz electric offensive is a key component of its “Ambition2039” strategic focus and a prerequisite on the way to carbon neutrality. Responsibly mined and processed raw materials provide the foundation for a sustainable Mercedes-Benz electric vehicle fleet. Respect and protection of human rights and of the environment, all the... Read more →


SEAT highlights Ku-Fizz foam and Oryzite rice husk project for more sustainable materials

SEAT held the second edition of its Innovation Day—an event focused on identifying and encouraging the spirit of innovation among the company’s own employees. Among the ideas, visions and projects presented by SEAT during the event is Ku-Fizz, a physical foam technology that reduces the weight of plastic parts, improving... Read more →


“Cobalt for Development” project started trainings for mining cooperatives in DRC

The cross-industry initiative “Cobalt for Development” has started trainings for twelve artisanal mining cooperatives in October in Kolwezi, Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo). The trainings cover major environmental, social and governance aspects for responsible mining practices. This includes mine site management and legal compliance, human rights, health and safety... Read more →


Cambridge study finds globalized economy making water, energy and land insecurity worse

The first large-scale study of the risks that countries face from dependence on water, energy and land resources has found that globalization may be decreasing, rather than increasing, the security of global supply chains. Countries meet their needs for goods and services through domestic production and international trade. As a... Read more →


Milestone in the strategic cooperation of Neste, Borealis and Covestro for the use of alternative raw materials

As part of a strategic collaboration, Covestro received a first delivery of 1,000 tons of renewable phenol from Borealis, produced with renewable hydrocarbons from Neste. Neste produces these ISCC Plus certified hydrocarbons (ISCC: International Sustainability and Carbon Certification) entirely from renewable raw materials. The hydrocarbons are then converted into ISCC... Read more →


Bridgestone focusing on sustainable procurement of natural rubber as part of sustainability campaign

Japan-based Bridgestone, the world’s largest tire manufacturer, has launched “A Layered Journey”—a new global campaign highlighting the company’s efforts to incorporate sustainability in its value chain with a focus on the sustainable procurement of natural rubber. The campaign travels from the forest where rubber trees are tapped for latex, continuing... Read more →


AFWERX extends submission deadline of Reimagining Energy Challenge for Air Force, DoD

AFWERX, the US Air Force’s innovation catalyst (earlier post), is seeking solutions from public and private industries; commercial sectors; government; and academia for the Department of Defense (DoD) Reimagining Energy Challenge to modernize and create the future of resilient energy production, transmission, utilization and storage for the US Air Force.... Read more →


State-owned Indonesia Battery Holding to help build integrated EV industry in Indonesia; role of nickel

In Indonesia, state miners MIND ID (Mining Industry Indonesia) and Aneka Tambang (ANTAM); state utility Perusahan Listrik Negara (PLN); and state oil company Pertamina have agreed to form a new venture: Indonesia Battery Holding. Indonesia Battery aims to be involved in the whole battery value chain, including producing battery minerals... Read more →


The Government of Canada is awarding $1.2 million to GreenNano Technologies Inc. (GNT), a company based in Toronto, to scale up production of a new lightweight wood-fiber–based composite material to create automotive parts using an innovative process. Cam covers made at GNT. The project will combine wood pulp with polymers... Read more →


Neste, Recycling Technologies and Unilever combine expertise to test and validate systems to recycle waste plastics chemically

Recycling Technologies, a specialist plastic recycling technology provider; Neste, the leading provider of renewable diesel, sustainable aviation fuel, and a forerunner in drop-in renewable and circular chemical solutions; and Unilever, the consumer goods manufacturer, will collaborate to develop further and to harness chemical recycling to recover and to reuse plastic... Read more →


DOE to award more than $27M to 12 plastics recycling R&D projects

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced more than $27 million in funding for 12 projects that will support the development of advanced plastics recycling technologies and new plastics that are recyclable-by-design. As part of DOE’s Plastics Innovation Challenge, these projects will also help improve existing recycling processes that break... Read more →


California Energy Commission approves $384M plan to accelerate zero-emission transportation; 50% of funds to benefit disadvantaged communities

The California Energy Commission (CEC) approved a $384 million plan for critical clean transportation investments to boost the adoption of zero-emission cars and trucks and help the state reach its climate, clean energy and public health goals. The plan focuses on closing gaps in zero-emission fuels and infrastructure to support... Read more →


Every year, Netherland-based student company TU/ecomotive produces an electric car with a team of 21 BA students from the Eindhoven University of Technology, with the aim of showing the world that a hypothetical, sustainable car of the future can be a reality today. The design of the sixth TU/ecomotive car—Luca—was... Read more →


BASF now has the worldwide distribution rights for RheoFalt smart additives to modify asphalt and bitumen manufactured by the Netherlands-based company Ventraco. Excluded from the agreement are Belgium, Luxembourg and The Netherlands, where Ventraco will continue to supply the products. RheoFalt HP-AM, a powerful rejuvenator, enables 100% recycling of old... Read more →


Jaguar Land Rover will use plastic waste in next-generation sustainable luxury interiors

Jaguar Land Rover is working with ECONYL nylon to develop high-quality interiors made from ocean and landfill waste. Next-generation Jaguar and Land Rover models will feature floor mats and trims made with ECONYL fiber from recycled industrial plastic, fabric offcuts from clothing manufacturers, fishing nets from the farming industry, and... Read more →


The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport MR will tackle this year’s Nürburgring 24-hour race featuring a complete body kit made of natural-fiber composite materials for the first time. Since early 2019, Porsche manufactured the two doors and the rear wing of the small series racing vehicle out of a natural-fiber... Read more →


Groupe Renault, partners develop XCEED blockchain project to certify compliance of vehicle components

Groupe Renault has developed the XCEED (eXtended Compliance End-to-End Distributed) blockchain project to certify the compliance of all vehicle components, from design to production. Designed and implemented in collaboration with leading automotive industry players, this tool enables greater responsiveness and efficiency at a time of ever-greater regulatory stringency. New market... Read more →


BASF’s Coatings division is presenting a new advanced refinish product line. By increasing the efficiency and significantly lowering the environmental impact, the products are designed to meet the highest expectations of modern body shops. During the development of the waterborne basecoat line, the focus was put on sustainable aspects: The... Read more →


The European Commission presented an Action Plan on Critical Raw Materials, the 2020 List of Critical Raw Materials and a foresight study on critical raw materials for strategic technologies and sectors from the 2030 and 2050 perspectives. The Action Plan looks at the current and future challenges and proposes actions... Read more →


Traction batteries and motors in electric vehicles (EVs) are very different than the powertrain components of the internal-combustion engine vehicles they replace. Their meteoric rise will lead to much greater demand for several materials markets which otherwise would see only modest growth. For example, while the combustion engine and transmission... Read more →


Roskill: Green magnesium moving to commercial reality; China’s dominance under threat?

While China remains, for now, the world’s leading magnesium producer, alternative green technology-driven projects elsewhere are attracting attention as the industry in general looks to reduce its carbon footprint, and even China starts to close inefficient capacities, according to Roskill Information Services. Magnesium is a light metal with a density... Read more →


BMZ and Continental are making a rubber supply chain digitally traceable for the first time

The German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and technology company Continental are making a rubber supply chain seamlessly electronically traceable—from cultivation in Indonesia and further processing through to tire production—for the first time. The creation of sustainable and traceable supply chains is an integral part of our... Read more →


Researchers find air pollution impacts the health of wild pollinators

In some of the first research to try to address the physiological and molecular impacts of air pollution on wild plants and animals, scientists from the Bangalore Life Science Cluster in India report that air pollution could be devastating for organisms we rely on most for our own survival—like the... Read more →


Novvi LLC begins production of 100% renewable base oils & process oils

Novvi LLC announced the successful start-up of its Deer Park, TX plant, where it is manufacturing and marketing 100% renewable base oils (NovaSpec Base Oils) for the lubricants industry, and 100% renewable process oils for polymer, adhesives, and personal care industries. Novvi is a joint venture of Amyris, Inc., Cosan,... Read more →


Senate passes sustainable chemistry act as part of military spending bill

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) passed by the Senate in late July includes the bipartisan Sustainable Chemistry Research and Development Act of 2019 (S.999), led by US Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) and cosponsored by Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.V.). The Sustainable Chemistry... Read more →


The BMW Group is making sustainability and resource efficiency central to the company’s strategic direction. Chairman of the Board of Management Oliver Zipse announced initial details of this strategic direction in Munich on Monday and presented the targets the company has set itself for the phase up to 2030. The... Read more →


CIPS poll finds 15% of businesses will no longer maintain their plans for sustainable supply chains due to the impact of COVID-19

A short poll by the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS) has found that the disruption caused by COVID-19 will lead to permanent changes in global supply chains, as businesses look to adapt to new ways of working and managing the varying stages of lockdown around the world. This... Read more →


Researchers from the University of California San Diego (UCSD) and the University of Texas at Austin, with colleagues at the US Army Research Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, have developed a thick cobalt-free high voltage spinel (LiNi0.5Mn1.5O4 (LNMO)) cathode material with high areal capacity. The paper on their work... Read more →


Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWGoA) and Tradepoint Atlantic celebrated the first day of operations at the Tradepoint Atlantic terminal at the Port of Baltimore, VWGoA’s newest port in the US. The port, which will serve roughly 302 dealers in the mid-Atlantic region, marks an approximately $150-million investment in the... Read more →


BMW Group sources sustainable cobalt worth around €100M from Morocco for fifth-gen batteries

Recently the BMW Group signed a cobalt supply contract with Moroccan mining company Managem Group; the contract has a volume of around €100 million, said Andreas Wendt, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Purchasing and Supplier Network. Managem is one of the world’s 5 largest... Read more →


Demand for raw materials used in the production of electric car batteries is set to soar, prompting the UN trade body, UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development), to call for the social and environmental impacts of the extraction of raw materials, which include human rights abuses, to be... Read more →


The COBRA (CObalt-free Batteries for FutuRe Automotive Applications) project has been awarded a €11.8-million grant to develop Next Generation Cobalt-free batteries. COBRA, which aims to develop lithium, cobalt-free batteries made with new energy storage materials that incorporate intelligent sensors to help enhance their energy efficiency, is funded by the European... Read more →


As the number of heavy-duty vehicles increases, roads are being subjected to even higher loads, usually requiring replacement after ten to twelve years. An innovative bitumen additive from BASF has been designed to help roads last longer. BASF has spent several years developing the additive together with the Institute of... Read more →


Cranfield: switching from aluminum to zinc alloys could greatly improve longevity and sustainability of automotive parts

A new study by researchers at Cranfield University in the UK finds that switching from aluminum to zinc alloys in the production of automotive parts could greatly enhance their longevity and sustainability. The study, conducted by Cranfield’s Sustainable Manufacturing Systems Center, evaluated the performance of three different alloys (aluminum-A380, magnesium-AZ91D... Read more →


The Volvo Cars manufacturing plant in Chengdu, the company’s largest in China, is now powered by 100% renewable electricity, taking the company’s global renewable electricity mix in its manufacturing network to 80%. The 100% renewable electricity mix in Chengdu is the result of a newly signed supply contract and will... Read more →


A Northwestern Engineering-led team has developed a highly porous smart sponge that selectively soaks up oil in water. With an ability to absorb more than 30 times its weight in oil, the sponge could be used to clean up oil spills inexpensively and efficiently without harming marine life. After squeezing... Read more →


London-based sustainability consultancy Kumi, a market leader in responsible sourcing practices for global supply chains, has launched a due diligence tool called CAHRA Map to enable companies in the minerals and metals sector to identify “conflict-affected and high-risk areas” (CAHRAs). The identification of CAHRAs is a critical step in the... Read more →


In October 2019, the London Metal Exchange (LME) released its requirements on responsible sourcing for Brands. Starting 2023, LME Brands must be compliant with the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas (OECD Guidance). (More than 500 brands from 55 countries are... Read more →


Researchers at Virginia Tech have demonstrated a green and more sustainable manufacturing method for LIBs in which no hazardous organic solvent is used during electrode manufacturing and recycling. A paper on their work is published in the journal iScience. The researchers found that the electrodes fabricated via water-based processing demonstrate... Read more →


UC Berkeley School of Law’s Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) and the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) are conducting a stakeholder-led research initiative focused on identifying strategies to improve sustainability and governance across the EV battery supply chain. Diagram of the EV battery supply chain from “Building... Read more →


Fortescue Metals Group and ATCO Australia have signed an agreement to explore the deployment of hydrogen vehicle fueling infrastructure in Western Australia. Under the agreement, the two parties will collaborate to build and operate a combined hydrogen production and refueling facility at ATCO’s existing facility in Jandakot in the Perth... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation has developed an airless paint atomizer that uses static electricity instead of air to replace the conventional air paint atomizers used in the vehicle body painting process. The newly developed airless painter, the first of its kind, achieves more than 95% coating efficiency (the amount of paint... Read more →