From green biomass waste to green eco-resource fibres

From Japanese knotweed to a light switch

Green waste residues are hardly used nowadays. Today, most green waste streams from the container parks are converted into compost and some fractions are incinerated into bioenergy. However, green residual flows from, among others, reeds and Japanese knotweed can be converted into quality fibres, an eco-raw material for further processing into valuable circular products.

Nowadays, green residual flows often have to be disposed of to a waste processing site. Today, most of it is converted into compost. The sieve overflow is often woody and is burned for the generation of green bioenergy. However, it is possible to separate various streams upon, eg. reeds, Japanese knotweed. Pro Natura/Kiemkracht has been experimenting for several years to convert these streams into quality fibres. The reeds and Japanese knotweed are naturally dried, then converted into a high-quality fiber by means of a hammer mill. These fibers form an eco-resource material that can be used for numerous applications. Mixed with natural resins and coffee grounds, it can serve as a tabletop or floor covering. Mixed with bio components, it can be pressed into a panel from which objects or furniture can be made. What can be done with reeds and Japanese knotweed can actually be done with any biomass stream, i.e. convert green waste into a fiber, a usable eco-resource material for further application in the production chain.

Within the Three C project, Pro Natura has gained a lot of experience in converting green waste streams into usable fibres. More than 12 residual flows were tested and analysed. The conversion to biochar by pyrolysis was also investigated. Various partners have started working with the fibres of reeds, Japanese knotweed and raspberry, among others. Pro Natura itself had a container made from raspberry fiber and starch in collaboration with a Dutch manufacturer of packaging. The container can be used for packaging fruit and is 100% biodegradable. Circular Matters started working with reeds and knotweed. The fibers are mixed with natural bio components and pressed into plates. These plates can serve as a furniture panel. At the initiative of Livable Lab, Circular Matters and Pro Natura teamed up with three designers and manufacturers to produce a new circular product based on these panels. These three products, a lighting, a light switch and a drawer tray won gold at the Henry van de Velde Design Award 2022.

Sterk geschakeld — KiemKracht