New lab for Samsara Eco's Plastic-Eating Enzymes
Enviro-tech startup Samsara Eco is embarking on a groundbreaking journey by establishing a cutting-edge research laboratory dedicated to the development of enzymes capable of breaking down plastic waste, rendering it suitable for recycling into fresh materials.
Since its inception in 2021 at the prestigious Australian National University (ANU), Samsara Eco has been fervently focused on this mission. Their forthcoming 'infinite recycling' Research & Development (R&D) facility, to be situated in Queanbeyan, Regional New South Wales, marks a significant step in realising their ambitions.
Located within the Poplars Innovation Precinct, this new R&D facility will serve as the canvas upon which Samsara Eco intends to amplify the capabilities of their patented enzymatic processes. The overarching goal is to be capable of recycling a staggering 1.5 million tonnes of plastic annually by the year 2030.
CEO and Founder of Samsara Eco, Paul Riley, articulated the urgency of their endeavour, stating, “We’ve had remarkable growth stemming from our ANU laboratory; however, the plastic crisis is escalating at an alarming pace. As we gear up for commercialisation, having access to our inaugural R&D facility will empower us to expedite the evolution of our infinite recycling solution, which can break down plastics within minutes as opposed to centuries."
Crucially, Samsara Eco remains steadfast in its partnership with the ANU, endeavouring to commercialise its existing enzymatic repository and simultaneously engineer novel enzymes capable of addressing diverse plastic varieties.
The company's pioneering infinite recycling technology demonstrates a remarkable capacity to return plastic to its fundamental molecular building blocks, which can then be harnessed to produce pristine plastic anew—an endlessly sustainable cycle.
Presently, Samsara Eco's enzymatic library boasts the capability to dismantle challenging plastic types, including coloured, multi-layered, mixed plastics, and textiles such as polyester and nylon 6,6.
Paul Riley emphasised, "The climate crisis cannot be addressed without tackling the plastic crisis. Plastic, an ingenious invention of the 20th century, has provided unparalleled utility owing to its durability, adaptability, and strength. Nevertheless, it has also become an environmental catastrophe, with almost every piece of the nine billion tonnes ever produced still persisting on our planet."
Samsara Eco's groundbreaking technology has attracted global attention, with Japan's Kanematsu Corporation investing in the venture and Samsara forming a multi-year development agreement with sportswear giant lululemon.
The company is collaborating closely with Poplars, the Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council, and the local community to bring their new infinite recycling R&D facility to fruition, with operations anticipated to commence by late 2024.
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