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Petrochemicals – News and Features

Smoke coming from factory chimneys.

Mobile Monitoring for an Airborne Carcinogen in Louisiana’s “Cancer Alley”

Researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology measured concerning levels of ethylene oxide in Louisiana’s southeastern corridor with mobile optical instruments, a technique they say could improve health risk assessments.
An ocean wave

New Method Optimizes Lithium Extraction From Seawater and Groundwater

Scientists have demonstrated a new method to extract valuable lithium from very dilute liquids – including seawater, groundwater and the “flowback water” generated from fracking and offshore oil drilling operations.
Mussels clustered together.

Mussels Downstream of Wastewater Facility Contain Radium

Mussels downstream of a wastewater facility that processed fracking wastewater from the oil and gas industry have been found to contain radium.
A map of the United States, with yellow, red and purple dots indicating abandoned farmland.

New US Map Shows the Abandoned Farms That Could Help Fight Climate Change

A map of nearly 30 million acres of cropland abandoned since the 1980s could guide decisions about how to balance production of energy and food.
A thin slice of part of a Sorghum bicolor shoot apex.

The Potential of Bioenergy Sorghum for Sustainable Biofuels

Bioenergy sorghum is an important resource for the production of biofuels and bioproducts. Researchers have been working hard to make this tall, drought-tolerant plant even more productive and resilient to harsh environmental conditions.
The underside of a pink mushroom

Mushroom Eco-Leather: The Next Step for Sustainable Fashion?

While there is demand within the fashion industry for vegan alternatives to leather, there are few sustainable options that can match current commercial needs. Now, a new production method could help to make mushroom-based leather a realistic option.
A tractor towing a container of fertilizer across a field.

New Method Reveals Heavy Metals in Fertilizer

Toxic metals in mineral phosphate fertilizers have been identified by a new tool that also outlines their impact on soil, water resources and food supply.
A 3D Printer.

Recyclable Bio-Sourced Resin Offers a Sustainable Future for 3D Printing

A Birmingham-led team has produced a photopolymer resin that can be printed at high resolution, broken down to its constituent parts, recycled and reprinted.
The process of an oil clean up with electron microscope images.

Laser-Treated Cork Absorbs Oil for Carbon-Neutral Ocean Cleanup

In Applied Physics Letters, by AIP Publishing, researchers used laser treatments to transform ordinary cork into a powerful tool for treating oil spills.
Bacteria and molecules.

Engineering Bacteria to Produce Green Chemicals from Methanol

Methanol can be synthesised from carbon dioxide and water using renewable energy. When this green methanol is metabolised by specialised bacteria, a variety of chemical substances can be biotechnologically produced.