Department of Energy Announces $25 Million for Plastics Recycling R&D, Launches Upcycling Consortium

Source: DOE, March 16, 2020

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $25 million in funding for plastics recycling research and development (R&D). The funding opportunity announcement (FOA) is part of the Department’s Plastics Innovation Challenge, a comprehensive program to accelerate innovations in plastics recycling technologies.

“The Trump Administration is committed to advancing plastic recycling technologies and the manufacturing of new plastics that are recyclable by design,” said Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes. “Through the Plastics Innovation Challenge, DOE is proud to take part in the development of technologies and strategies to improve how we manage plastics within and beyond America’s borders.”

The Advanced Manufacturing Office and Bioenergy Technologies Office within the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy issued the joint FOA, titled “BOTTLE: Bio-Optimized Technologies to Keep Thermoplastics out of Landfills and the Environment.” With up to $25 million in funding, the BOTTLE FOA will support the development of new plastics that are capable of efficient recyclability and on improving recycling strategies that can break existing plastics into chemical building blocks that can be used to make higher-value products.

To further advance the Plastics Innovation Challenge, DOE also announced the launch of the new BOTTLE Consortium. The National Laboratory-led BOTTLE Consortium is focused on designing new plastics and recycling strategies, in collaboration with industry and academia. The BOTTLE Consortium currently consists of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

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