Greening Personal Care Chemistry

Mar 1, 2008 | Contact Author | By: James H. Clark and Louise Summerton, Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence
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Title: Greening Personal Care Chemistry
green chemistryx sustainable developmentx clean synthesisx renewable resourcesx greener productsx substitutionx
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Keywords: green chemistry | sustainable development | clean synthesis | renewable resources | greener products | substitution

Abstract: Multiple economic, legislative and customer pressures are forcing an unprecedented level of change in chemical manufacturing and the design of chemical products. The authors examine the drivers for change and opportunities across the product lifecycle for green and sustainable chemistry including the use of renewable resources, cleaner synthesis methods and greener products.

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The challenges for chemical-intensive industries, including the producers of personal care products, in the 21st century are as great as those faced by almost any industry. The chemical industry, which has been effective in supplying a diverse range of intermediates and formulation components largely based on low-cost petroleum feedstock, is now under pressure to change the way it operates. The drivers for change affect all aspects of production, notably feedstock, manufacturing processes and the choice and key design features of products.

While the impact of increasing oil prices on the cost of transportation and heating fuels is frequently and often dramatically publicized, the effects on other oil-dependent industries and their downstream users receive less attention. Some 20% of the petroleum used in the European Union (EU) goes into chemical manufacturing such as feedstock and energy, and more than 90% of the organic chemicals used today are oil-derived.

To add to the problem of increasing costs, the industry also faces concerns over reliability of supply due to the demand from rapidly growing chemical industries in areas such as China. When the price of phenol, a major building block petrochemical, tripled in 2005, the price hike could be attributed to both oil price increases and demand from the growing industries of the East.

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Figure 1. Drivers for change

 Figure 1. Drivers for change 

Figure 2. Green chemistry reductions

 Figure 2. Green chemistry reductions

Figure 3. Biomass-derived

 Figure 3. Biomass-derived

Figure 4. Examples of biomass-derived

Figure 4. Examples of biomass-derived

Figure 5. Products

 Figure 5. Products 

Figure 6. Routes to greener products

 Figure 6. Routes to greener products

Figure 7. Production

 Figure 7. Production

Figure 8. A more environmentally friendly substitute for EDTA, EDDS

 Figure 8. A more environmentally friendly substitute for EDTA, EDDS

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