Lynn L. Bergeson, Charles M. Auer, and R. David Peveler, “TSCA and the Regulation of Renewable Chemicals,” Industrial Biotechnology, October 2012.
The dual national goals of reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil and greening the economy converge in biobased chemicals, the promising and rapidly evolving field of technology that produces commercial chemicals from renewable feedstocks. Although biobased chemicals have a long history, increasing sensitivity to reliance on nonrenewable feedstocks and the environmental impact of petroleum-derived chemicals have hastened the commercialization of biobased chemicals, and today they are in production as never before. According to one estimate, biobased chemicals’ share of the global chemical industry is expected to grow from 2% in 2008 to 22% by 2025. Lux Research reports that biobased chemicals capacity will double in market potential to $19.7 billion in 2016.