Special Issue "Bioplastics in the Environment"

A special issue of Environments (ISSN 2076-3298).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2020) | Viewed by 11657

Special Issue Editor

Department of Environmental Engineering, Democritus University of Thrace, Kimmeria Campus, GR 671 32 Xanthi, Greece
Interests: municipal solid waste management; composting; biorefining of solid waste; life cycle analysis
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Bioplastics have recently begun to form a big part of our everyday life as consumers and are expected to continue to do so at an exponential rate following various key legislations around the world imposing a ban on several types of conventional plastics (e.g., Directive 2019/904/EU, ban of nondegradable plastics in China by the end of 2022). Bioplastics is a generic term that is often confused with biodegradable plastics. A bioplastic may be biobased, but not biodegradable, whilst there are cases of petrochemical (conventional) plastics that can be biodegradable. Most research on the biodegradability of bioplastics has dealt with aerobic (composting) environments; as a result, the term “compostable” differs from the term “biodegradable”. A lot of standards (ASTM, CEN, ISO) exist on how to assess the biodegradability of bioplastics, primarily under aerobic environments. In addition, new bioplastics are manufactured every year with the goal to make them readily degradable and durable, as conventional plastics, and to maintain their cost relatively low and comparable to that of petrochemical plastics—something which is not yet the case, as the latter still remain less expensive. The valorization of organic wastes to manufacture novel bioplastics is gaining a lot of attention too. In some countries, the use of biodegradable plastics is mandatory during the separate collection of biowaste. How biodegradable those bioplastics are, however? Can they be only degraded, and how fast, and what can be their impact on the recycling of conventional plastics if accidentally mixed with them?

The goal of this special issue is to tackle some of the above issues in order to highlight the role of bioplastics under a circular economy framework. This SI, therefore, welcomes manuscripts on the following topics as regards to bioplastics:

  • Biodegradable vs. compostable vs oxodegradable bioplastics;
  • Conversion of organic wastes to bioplastics;
  • Other novel materials to manufacture bioplastics;
  • Aerobic and anaerobic biodegradability
  • Lacks in the existing standards to assess their biodegradability
  • Compostable bioplastics at the industrial scale
  • Chemical recycling
  • Impact of bioplastics on the recycling of conventional plastics
  • Indexes to assess their biodegradation
  • Economics of their production and use
  • Life cycle analyses and carbon footprint of their production and use
  • Microplastics generated from bioplastics
  • Bioplastics in marine environments

Dr. Dimitrios Komilis
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Environments is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1500 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • bioplastics
  • biodegradable plastics
  • biobased plastics
  • oxodegradable plastics
  • compostable plastics
  • economics
  • life cycle analysis
  • microplastics
  • marine environments
  • waste valorization

Published Papers (1 paper)

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30 pages, 3321 KiB  
The Way of Macroplastic through the Environment
Environments 2020, 7(10), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments7100073 - 24 Sep 2020
Cited by 59 | Viewed by 11142
With the focus on microplastic in current research, macroplastic is often not further considered. Thus, this review paper is the first to analyse the entry paths, accumulation zones, and sinks of macroplastic in the aquatic, terrestrial, and atmospheric environment by presenting transport paths [...] Read more.
With the focus on microplastic in current research, macroplastic is often not further considered. Thus, this review paper is the first to analyse the entry paths, accumulation zones, and sinks of macroplastic in the aquatic, terrestrial, and atmospheric environment by presenting transport paths and concentrations in the environment as well as related risks. This is done by applying the Source–Pathway–Receptor model on macroplastic in the environment. Based on this model, the life cycle of macroplastic is structurally described, and knowledge gaps are identified. Hence, current research aspects on macroplastic as well as a sound delimitation between macro- and microplastic that can be applied to future research are indicated. The results can be used as basic information for further research and show a qualitative assessment of the impact of macroplastic that ends up in the environment and accumulates there. Furthermore, the applied model allows for the first time a quantitative and structured approach to macroplastic in the environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioplastics in the Environment)
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