President Obama’s State of the Union Address on Feb. 12, 2013 touched on some issues that may directly impact the pharmaceutical industry: healthcare reform, innovation, and job creation. So how has the pharmaceutical industry responded?
Archive for the 'Green' Category
Earlier this year, the concept of solar-powered aviation was further propelled from its proverbial runway, testing many limits that had not been previously realized in the realm of energy-efficient transportation. However, as is the case with virtually every achievement since the dawn of civilization, the question remains the same: Where do we go from here?
From May–July 2012, Solar Impulse—with the help of several sponsors, including Bayer MaterialScience, the subsidiary of the pharmaceutical manufacturer Bayer—successfully completed a series of flights (known as Crossing Frontiers) as part of a round-trip journey from Switzerland to Morocco, setting several world records, according to the World Air Sports Federation, in the solar-powered subcategory (including for free distance along a course, and for straight distance with predeclared waypoints). In addition, the mission included the first solar-powered intercontinental flight linking Europe to Africa when Solar Impulse’s HB-SIA plane crossed the Strait of Gibraltar.
Researchers are trying to find better, cheaper ways to produce biodegradable and bio-based polymers. Although one of the main drivers for this research is to compete with fossil-fuel-based polymers in large-volume, consumer plastics applications, medical applications, such as microcapsules for drug delivery, may also benefit. While it seems odd, the researchers found that waste oil from cooking fried food can be used as a raw material in the polymer production process. Read more »
The news that the London 2012 Olympic Games aims to be the first Olympics to be “zero waste to landfill” is an indication of the growing importance of finding new ways to fulfill the old mantra of “reduce, reuse, and recycle”. Recycling is even finding new applications in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries as more companies seek to reduce waste. Read more »
Next week is the annual Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Convention in Washington, DC. Many of our editorial team members will be there and we hope to see you. With a regulatory pathway for biosimilars underway in the United States, renewed conversations about regenerative medicine, and a booming biotech sector, the convention should be quite dynamic. Part of the program this year includes the Partnering for Global Health Forum, which takes place Monday, June 27, and is cosponsored by BIO Ventures for Global Health (BVGH). Read more »
Sustainability is about more than going green. When it comes to business strategy, it also includes social and corporate governance, according to a definition from Brandlogic and CRD Analytics. The consulting firm and investment analytics firm, respectively, recently released a survey about the real and perceived sustainability efforts of the top 100 companies around the world. Read more »
As Earth Day (April 22) approaches, many environmentalists and policymakers are discussing steps for the future with regard to reducing carbon footprints, saving energy, and restoring the world’s deteriorating ecosystems. In fact, a key debate on the blogosphere and news wires this week surrounds the issue of the environmental refugee—a term used by the UN and others to define a person that has been displaced because of environmental causes, notably land loss and degradation of land, and natural disaster, according to the UN Statistics Division. Read more »
Last month, close to 100 environmental ministers from more than 130 countries, with members from the private sector, scientific bodies, and civil-society organizations, met in Nairobi, Kenya, at the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum, in advance of The UN Conference on Sustainable Development 2012, which will be held in Brazil next year. UDEP issued a report at last month’s meeting to kick-start dialogue and policy considerations toward facilitating a transition toward a low-carbon, resource-efficient, green economy, a strategy where manufacturing will play a pivotal role. The challenge for the pharmaceutical industry and other manufacturing and business sectors is how to bring the goals of sustainability into organizational and operational practice. Read more »
Pfizer Global Engineering and Manufacturing has been working with students and faculty from Rowan University’s chemical engineering department to investigate green approaches to drug manufacturing, according to a July Rowan press release. The partnership is aimed at analyzing and quantifying the economic viability and environmental benefit, respectively, of investing in a small solvent-recovery system. Such a system provides an alternative to incineration for small volumes of waste. Read more »