Turning Plastic into Compost


Based on the discovery in 2012 of an amazonian fungus (Pestalotiopsis microspora), which is able to degrade polyurethane, a kind of plastic, and turn it into organic material, PLASTEAT is a process that would enable us to turn this plastic into compost. All in all, PLASTEAT would offer a great solution for a major worldwide problem: plastic pollution.
The environmental problem is that once it is disposed at landfills it remains there almost indefinitely because as it does hardly decompose by its own. Polyurethane can be burnt, but this releases harmful greenhouse gases and toxic aerosols into the atmosphere. PLASTEAT aims at providing a solution for the recycling of both industrial quantities and private household quantities.
Revenues are generated by selling the actual degradation process to business customers and a degradation box to private customers.


Quick facts

  • 2016 Participant
    Year of participation
  • Sustainable Land Use, Sustainable Production Systems
  • Austria

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  • Jutta Camen (business & economics); Michael Leitner (biotechnology); Christina Gruber (biotechnology); Benoit Galaup (biotechnology); Lukas Grünberger (engineering)

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