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What are the Biobased Chemical Building Blocks (BCBBs)?

A Chemical Building Block (CBB) is a molecule which can be converted to various secondary chemicals and intermediates, and, therefore, can give rise to a broad range of different downstream uses. When this molecule derived from biomass, it can be called Biobased Chemical Building Block (BCBB). Green Building Block is other extended name to refer to the same concept. Two types of BCBBs exist: those that are chemically identical to their petrochemical counterparts (drop-in) and those that are completely new and with unique characteristics. The first type can immediately be used in the current industrial infrastructure whereas the second type result in the development of new products. The largest markets for BCBBs are in the production of biobased polymers, biolubricants and green solvents. 

From a chemical perspective, nearly all CBB can be made using renewable raw materials. However, not every process is commercially feasible. The development of biobased chemicals has really taken off over the past decade. There is an existing market for BCBBs but current production is just a fraction of the petrochemical market. The growth is impressive and it is expected that production will increase considerably in the coming years. The development levels varying according to the building block considered and ranging from proof of concept in laboratory to full commercial production. 

Information about biorefineries producing the most relevant BCBBs

A summary of the main data available about the biorefineries (commercial and pilot facilities) for the production of the most promising BCBBs can be found in the following links. The posts will be updated in a regular basis. 

Publication date: 16/10/2015.
Last update: 20/12/2015.
Publication date: 16/11/2015.
Last update: 20/02/2016.
Publication date: 14/12/2015.
Last update: 24/05/2017.
Publication date: 08/02/2016.
Last update: 12/04/2017.
Publication date: 15/06/2017.
Last update: 15/06/2017.
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Other interesting general resources:

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