Posted on March 31, 2023 by Lynn L Bergeson
By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
To celebrate its 125th anniversary, ASTM International invited case study submissions from committee members to highlight standards that have made a significant impact in society. One of the winning entries is on a set of standards for biodegradable plastic from Committee D20 on Plastics. According to ASTM International’s article, standard test methods for determining the biobased content of solid, liquid, and gaseous samples using radiocarbon analysis (D6866) allows industry, regulators, and government to determine experimentally the percent biobased carbon present in a product or fuel. The article notes that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) BioPreferred® program, mandated by Congress in the 2018 Farm Bill, authorizes the procurement of biobased products by the federal government. The article states that this standard is required to be used to report the percent biobased content of product for federal procurement, as well as for labeling a product with the BioPreferred logo showing biobased content.
The article states that there are two companion specification standards for compostable plastics and paper coatings, “redesigning plastic polymers for biodegradability in industrial composting for an environmentally responsible, managed end-of-life”:
- Standard specification for labeling of plastics designed to be aerobically composted in municipal or industrial facilities (D6400); and
- Standard specification for labeling of end items that incorporate plastics and polymers as coatings or additives with paper and other substrates designed to be aerobically composted in municipal or industrial facilities (D6868).
The standard specifications, which are “grounded in strong science and driven by consensus, provided much-needed clarity and credibility for acceptance in the marketplace and by regulatory bodies in states like California, Washington, Minnesota, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.” The article states that the BioPreferred program mandates D6866 as the only accepted standard for determining and reporting biobased content of products, and that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires the standard for reporting on biobased content in fuels. According to the article, industry uses D6400 and D6868 exclusively for making claims of biodegradability under industrial composting conditions. These standards are also the basis of certifications issued by U.S. and European organizations. The article notes that many stakeholders require that compostable products meet D6400 for plastics and D6868 for coatings on paper, and that industrial composters also require certification that the compostable products are certified to these standards.
Posted on February 28, 2020 by Lynn L Bergeson
By Lynn L. Bergeson and Ligia Duarte Botelho, M.A.
Posted on April 06, 2018 by Lynn L Bergeson
By Lynn L. Bergeson
ASTM International’s energizing fuels division recently passed an Alcohol To Jet (ATJ) ethanol based specification ballot measure that will allow jet fuel, produced from ethanol under the ATJ process, to be sold commercially on a global basis. ASTM D7566 had previously permitted ethanol as a feedstock for Aviation Turbine Fuel with a maximum final fuel blend of 50 percent, but now permits a full replacement of the hydrocarbon fuel. This change opens the door to the use of more drop-in fuels used as alternatives to fossil fuels. Kevin Weiss, CEO of Byogy Renewables, stated of the change, "it's one thing to have a great commodity product, but without an operative supply chain it's difficult to sell. […] We now have the ability to supplement and leverage the existing downstream petroleum industry with a well distributed ATJ Sustainable Aviation Fuel that can be produced anywhere by building on the existing global ethanol supply chain.”
Posted on November 18, 2016 by Kathleen M Roberts
ASTM Committee D20 on Plastics and CEN TC411 issued a call for presentation abstracts for the Workshop on Degradable, Biodegradable, and Biobased Products Standards. The 2017 workshop is designed to facilitate a discussion on standards development and implementation regarding testing and specification of biobased, degradable, and biodegradable materials.
Topics for presentation and panel discussions include:
|Biobased/renewable resource content testing, specification, and certification;
|Aerobic degradability/biodegradability testing, specification, and certification;
|Anaerobic degradability/biodegradability testing, specification, and certification; and
||Environmental degradability/biodegradability testing, specification, and certification.
The workshop will be held April 5, 2017, in Toronto, Canada. The date for abstract submittal is December 9, 2016.
Posted on September 09, 2016 by editor
Posted on August 26, 2016 by Heidi
ASTM International's Committee on Plastics recently approved revisions to standard D6866, Test Methods for Determining the Biobased Content of Solid, Liquid, and Gaseous Samples Using Radiocarbon Analysis. This standard was originally approved in 2004, and is used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) BioPreferred® Program, by EPA when it is determining the sustainability of plastics, and by other corporations using biobased plastics. D6866 is used to determine the percent of carbons present in the final product that come from plant-biomass carbon feedstock versus petroleum-based carbon feedstocks.