Green chemistry, biorefineries and second generation strategies for re-use of waste: an overview

L. A. PFALTZGRAFF and J. H. CLARK, University of York, UK

DOI: 10.1533/9780857097385.1.3

Abstract: Today fossil resources supply 86% of our energy and 96% of organic chemicals. Future petroleum production is unlikely to meet our society’s growing needs. Green chemistry is an area which is attracting increasing interest as it provides unique opportunities for innovation via use of clean and green technologies, product substitution and the use of renewable feedstocks such as dedicated crops or food supply chain by-products for the production of bio-derived chemicals, materials and fuels. This chapter provides an introduction to the concepts of green chemistry and the biorefinery and, based on examples, discusses second generation re-use of waste and by-products as feedstocks for the biorefinery.

Key words: green chemistry, clean technologies, biorefinery, renewable and sustainable resources, food supply chain waste, resource intelligence.

1.1 Introduction

Through the combination of low environmental impact and safe technologies, the use of biomass can provide a renewable alternative to fossil resources. It can establish a new sustainable supply chain for the production of high value chemicals, including fuels and energy as well as materials.

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