Get Regular Updates!
Search
|Is Hemp the key to a sustainable future?

Tech

image|

Barbetorte/Wikimedia /CC BY-SA 3.0

Is Hemp the key to a sustainable future?

Is Hemp the key to a sustainable future?

Hemp is one of the most versatile and sustainable plants on the planet—and with Mirreco’s new harvesting machine, its many uses could go mainstream.

Is Hemp the key to a sustainable future?

Richard Evans is on a mission to save the world with hemp.

“Our generation has been tasked with one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century, namely reducing global carbon emissions,” he says.

“I feel my destiny is to contribute to solving this in a big way—on the global stage—and leave a positive impact that will help many, far and wide.”

In 2018, Richard founded WA-based company Mirreco, which is focused on mainstreaming the use of hemp to address a growing environmental crisis.

View Larger
Image|Mirreco
Mirreco believe hemp can be a solution to make a wide range of products sustainable – including housing.

Innovative processing

Richard says hemp is “renewable, sustainable and clean” and can be used to “create foods, proteins, fibres and medicines”.

If that wasn’t enough, Richard also says the plant would be useful for decontaminating soil, storing carbon and could even be a contender to replace the oil industry.

The diverse potential of hemp is why Mirreco created its specialised machine—a world-first invention capable of processing hemp in a new way.

“I realised a few years ago that the bottleneck in the global hemp industry is processing,” says Richard.

“We’ve developed advanced, mobile processing technology that can transform the hemp plant into abundant resources.” 

The machine allows for processing at farms, with rapid conversion into numerous materials that can be used for many purposes.

It can produce building materials alongside products such as paper, plastic, furniture and cars.

When it’s not being used to process hemp, it can even be used to recycle plastic.

View Larger
Image|Mirreco
Hemp can be turned into a wide range of products, including paper and bioplastics.

Does hemp get you high?

While hemp and marijuana are technically the same plant—cannabis—the key difference is their levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Hemp has less than 0.3% THC, whereas marijuana contains between 5% and 20% THC.

Since 2017, it’s been legal to sell hemp as a food in Australia.

Much like how poppy seeds from the opium poppy wont get you high, neither will hemp.

This is a critical distinction when considering growing hemp at commercial scale in countries like Australia where marijuana is illegal.

View Larger
Image|Mirreco
Mirreco are testing hemp housing panels as both a carbon trap and a more sustainable building solution.

A greener future

After a decade of work, Mirreco plans to commercialise its machine this year, but it’s not the only hemp-based project in its sights.

The company is developing the world’s first Lumecast prototype house, which uses hemp combined with a range of other sustainable technologies.

It’s also working to commercialise ‘structural hemp’, which can be used as alternative building materials to concrete and steel.

Mirreco also plans to launch an initiative for carbon storage called CAST (Carbon Asset Storage Technology).

We love science puns VIDEO

Republish

Creative Commons Logo

Republishing our content

We want our stories to be shared and seen by as many people as possible.

Therefore, unless it says otherwise, copyright on the stories on Particle belongs to Scitech and they are published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

This allows you to republish our articles online or in print for free. You just need to credit us and link to us, and you can’t edit our material or sell it separately.

Using the ‘republish’ button on our website is the easiest way to meet our guidelines.

Guidelines

You cannot edit the article.

When republishing, you have to credit our authors, ideally in the byline. You have to credit Particle with a link back to the original publication on Particle.

If you’re republishing online, you must use our pageview counter, link to us and include links from our story. Our page view counter is a small pixel-ping (invisible to the eye) that allows us to know when our content is republished. It’s a condition of our guidelines that you include our counter. If you use the ‘republish’ then you’ll capture our page counter.

If you’re republishing in print, please email us to let us so we know about it (we get very proud to see our work republished) and you must include the Particle logo next to the credits. Download logo here.

If you wish to republish all our stories, please contact us directly to discuss this opportunity.

Images

Most of the images used on Particle are copyright of the photographer who made them.

It is your responsibility to confirm that you’re licensed to republish images in our articles.

Video

All Particle videos can be accessed through YouTube under the Standard YouTube Licence.

The Standard YouTube licence

  1. This licence is ‘All Rights Reserved’, granting provisions for YouTube to display the content, and YouTube’s visitors to stream the content. This means that the content may be streamed from YouTube but specifically forbids downloading, adaptation, and redistribution, except where otherwise licensed. When uploading your content to YouTube it will automatically use the Standard YouTube licence. You can check this by clicking on Advanced Settings and looking at the dropdown box ‘License and rights ownership’.
  2. When a user is uploading a video he has license options that he can choose from. The first option is “standard YouTube License” which means that you grant the broadcasting rights to YouTube. This essentially means that your video can only be accessed from YouTube for watching purpose and cannot be reproduced or distributed in any other form without your consent.

Contact

For more information about using our content, email us: particle@scitech.org.au

Copy this HTML into your CMS
Press Ctrl+C to copy

We've got chemistry. Want something physical?