They're called CarbonCapture Paks, and they're helping Ecostore to save over 639 tonnes of CO₂ from being released into the atmosphere each year. It's happening already; since the bottles were launched, EcoStore and its customers have avoided over 1.5 tonnes of carbon emissions from fossil derived plastics. This is equivalent to over 560 vehicles removed from the road, or the electricity consumption of close to 1,400 New Zealand homes for one year!
So how does it work? The plastic is derived from sugar cane, which traps CO₂ as it grows as part of the process of photosynthesis. Generally the plants release the CO₂ back into the atmosphere when they die. But before this can happen, the sugar cane is turned into ethyl alcohol, and eventually into High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE) plastic. The CO₂ captured during the sugarcane cultivation process remains stored during the plastic's entire life cycle (as long as it is not incinerated). Every kg of the sugarcane based plastic captures and stores 2 kg of CO₂ from the atmosphere.
The CarbonCapture bottles are also fully recyclable; it’s chemically identical to traditional petrochemical plastic, meaning that it can be recycled as 2 HDPF.
It’s estimated that from using the CarbonCapture packaging, EcoStore will be able to save 639 tonnes of CO₂ from being released into the atmosphere every year. Currently 98% of their bottled products are being converted to this new HDPE plastic – this currently excludes their caps, lip balm tubes, and some bulk products, however the company is investigating ways of converting these types of packaging as well.
It’s amazing the inventive, pioneering solutions that can come from values-based, sustainable thinking! Here at Commonsense, we’re proud to stock EcoStore on our shelves. For the month of July 2016, all products stocked in CarbonCapture packaging are 20% off!