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Coca-Cola Brings PlantBottle to China

Coca-Cola has revealed plans to sell its fizzy drinks, including Coca-Cola, Sprite and Fanta, in "greener" bottles in China that they call a coke plant-bottle 860PlantBottle.

According to the company, the recycled plastic, or PET, bottles now going to be used will be the first to be made partially from plants, in this case, sugarcane waste.

Existing PET (or polyethylene terephthalate) bottles are made from non-renewable petroleum, but the new PlantBottle to be used in China has been created from one of the key ingredients from sugarcane for PET plastic, called monoethylene glycol, which represents 30 percent of the total composition of PET plastic by weight.

Coca-Cola is working with local partners on the potential of utilizing cellulose from plants.

If it succeeds, plant waste that can be found anywhere in the world such as stems, stalks and bark could be used as valuable resources, officials said.

Huang Xiaoyan, a research fellow and director of global external technology acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co, which has led the material innovation of the PlantBottle, said the packaging looks, functions and recycles just like traditional PET plastic, but does so with a smaller environmental footprint.

"It is understood that plants are renewable - but petroleum will be exhausted one day.

"Therefore, we started research on this sustainable packaging in 2006. Currently, we are using sugarcane from Brazil."

The new PlantBottle packaging will be used to distribute the company's 888 ml and 1 liter sparkling products, and will initially be launched in Shanghai, Hangzhou, Tianjin and Liaoning province.

The new packaging actually started being distributed in supermarkets there in March.

Coca-Cola has been given lot of support from major partners such as local retailer RT-Mart, said Zhang Huaying, Coca-Cola's vice-president in China and Korea.

"We imported some PlantBottle packaging during the World Expo 2010 Shanghai. With the supply chain built up now, we think it is the right time to introduce this into China," she said.

Although the exact investment in the research and development of the PlantBottle has not been disclosed, Zhang said the cost would not be transferred to consumers.

David G. Brooks, Coca-Cola's president in China and Korea, added: "Chinese consumers are well aware of the importance of environmental protection.

"We also believe that in the next 10 years, China will be the fastest growing market for Coca-Cola. We are committed to using PlantBottle packaging for all plastic bottles by 2020 in China."

The Coca-Cola Co introduced the first PlantBottle packages in Copenhagen in 2009. Until now, it has produced more than 14 billion items in 24 countries using the product, eliminating the equivalent of 300,000 barrels of oil, or the equivalent of almost 135,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, it said.

It is also working with leading companies such as Nike, Heinz, Procter & Gamble and Ford to further promote the technology.

SustainAbility Newsletter Archive Article (random)

10 Facts About Water


Our Earth seems to be unique among the other known celestial bodies. It has water, which covers three-fourths of its surface and constitutes 60-70 wt % of the living world. Water regenerates and is redistributed through evaporation, making it seem endlessly renewable. So why worry?  

Actually, only 1% of the world's water is usable to us. About 97% is salty sea water, and 2% is frozen in glaciers and polar ice caps. Thus that 1% of the world's water supply is a precious commodity necessary for our survival. 

To follow are 10 more facts about water:

  1. One drop of oil can make up to 6.6 gallons of water undrinkable.
  2. 70% of the world’s water is used for agriculture, 22% for industry and 8% for domestic use. Low and middle income countries use 82% of their water for agriculture, 10% for industry and 8% for domestic use. High income countries use 30% of their water for agriculture, 59% for industry and 11% for domestic use.
  3. A person is able to survive one month without food but only five to seven days without water.
  4. Of all the Earth’s water, 97.5% is salt and 2.5% is fresh. Of the fresh water, about 70% is locked in glacial ice and 30% in soil, leaving under 1% (.007% of the total fresh water) readily accessible for human use. 
  5. A water footprint, or virtual water, is the amount of water used in the entire production and/or growth of a specific product. For example, 2.2 lbs of beef has a water footprint of 4,226.8 gallons; one sheet of paper has a water footprint of 2.6 gallons; one cup of tea has a water footprint of 9.2 gallons; and one microchip has a water footprint of 8.5 gallons.
  6. It takes 25 to 50 gallons to take a five-minute shower; 2-7 gallons to flush a toilet; 2 gallons to brush one’s teeth; and 20 gallons to hand wash dishes.
  7. 6,000 children die each day from preventable water-related diseases.
  8. The population of the United States is approximately 304 million; the population of Europe is approximately 732.7 million; 1.1 billion people lack adequate drinking water access; and 2.6 billion people lack basic water sanitation. 
  9. The average American uses about 151.9 gallons of water per day, with about 60% of that being used out-of-doors (watering lawns, washing cars, etc.) The average European uses 66 gallons of water per day. 1.1 billion people lack adequate water access, using less than 5 gallons per day.
  10.  The average American uses 30.3 times more water than a person who lacks adequate water access; the average European uses 13.2 times more water than a person who lacks adequate water access.




References and Sources used in this issue of SustainAbility Newsletter Include:

Audubon Lifestyles 
The International Sustainability Council 

Sustainability Campaign


American Society of Golf Course Architects

The United States Golf Association (USGA)

Sustainable Golf & Development

Turf Feeding Systems

National Geographic



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A Coalition for Good - Spreading the Seeds of Sustainability

ISC-Audubon is a coalition of non-profit organizations and initiatives that include The International Sustainability Council (ISC), Audubon Lifestyles, Audubon Outdoors, Planit Green, Broadcast Audubon, and the Audubon Network for Sustainability. 

Funds generated through memberships and donations are used to provide fruit & vegetable seeds, wildflower seed mix, and wildlife feed & birdseed to urban and suburban communities around the world. These seeds are used by communities to establish fruit and vegetable gardens, bird and wildlife sanctuaries, and for the beautification of urban and suburban landscapes by creating flower and native plant gardens.

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