News | March 12, 2018

CARBIOS Announces The Development Of A New Process For Depolymerizing PET Polyester Fibers From Textile Waste

Clermont-Ferrand - CARBIOS, a pioneer in the field of bioplastics, recently announced that it has taken a new step in the development of its enzymatic depolymerization process. making it applicable to PET polyester fibers of textile waste.

After demonstrating that the enzymatic depolymerization of PET plastics allows the virtuous cycle of return to a virgin PET, CARBIOS opens up a new large market by depolymerizing 100% PET textile waste fibers into their original monomers: the PTA (terephthalic acid) and MEG (mono ethylene glycol). In fact, polyester, which represents around 50% of the global market, is today the most widely produced fiber in the world. The main polyester is polyethylene terephthalate, more commonly known as PET. Each year, 43 million tonnes of PET are produced for the fiber market  compared to 15 million tonnes for plastic bottles.

The key objective of this new process, developed with the academic partners of CARBIOS (INRA / TWB / LISBP) and supported by ADEME Auvergne Rhône-Alpes, is to provide:

  • to the recycling industry, a competitive solution for recovering used textiles based on PET polyester;
  • and the textile industry , the possibility of using recycled PET fibers that can totally replace those from fossil resources.

It will also contribute to several environmental objectives such as reducing landfill waste or reducing the carbon footprint.

Today, most textile waste is sent to landfills or incinerated and, when recycled, is mainly degraded, which means that a material of inferior quality to that of origin is product. While Europe and many countries around the world are struggling to recycle mountains of textile waste, CARBIOS 'technological innovation can help turn this environmental threat into a new opportunity based on the principle of the circular economy, benefiting society as a whole.