Sustainable Chemistry or Green Chemistry may be defined as the creation, development and application of products and chemical processes to reduce or eliminate the use and generation of substances that are harmful to the human health and to the environment.
In Brazil, as well as in the world, many processes and products are based on the petrochemical industry, among which: fuels, polymers, several chemical products. Such processes have long been established, as well as their industrial chain. However, there is a strong tendency for a change in the main platform of the chemical industry (oil), which leads to the overcoming of new challenges and to the need to discuss the processes based on renewable platforms, with the intention to consolidate Green Chemistry.
Brazil has a recognized potential for the generation of technologies from renewable sources due to its strong agricultural and forest industries. The generation of products and byproducts from renewable sources is quite expressive, which justifies the fact that many industries of the bioenergy, chemistry and specialty sectors have identified the country as a proper place for the establishment of partnerships and development of their research.
Chemicals from Sugarcane in Three Platforms: Lignin, Hemicelluloses and Cellulose
In this context, CTBE has acted in R,D&I of technological routes for the obtainment of renewable green chemicals from sugarcane as a primary source. An important prerogative for CTBE is that the development of green chemical routes are in harmony with the ethanol route (1 and 2G), aiming to enable these processes and consolidate the concept of sugarcane biorefinary.
CTBE acts in different processes, both chemical and biotechnological, based on three platforms: lignin, hemicelluloses and cellulose. The cellulosic fraction has been prioritized for the 2G ethanol process, however, the cellulose residues generated along this process have been used in the development of processes for the obtainment of higher added value products.
In the context of Green Chemistry, CTBE currently counts on in house research projects, and research projects with the private sector which are conducted under confidentiality conditions as agreed with the partner.
Among the partner companies are DOW, DSM, Solvay, Natura and L’Oreal.