Could this help solve the single-use face mask garbage problem? A new biodegradable face mask in Canada just got funding and will be made with a sustainable filter. It's going to be developed and manufactured here at home so it'll be an all Canadian affair.
Canada's Natural Resources Minister Seamus O'Regan announced on August 7 that the government is investing $1.3 million in FPInnovations, a not-for-profit that creates solutions for the country's forest sector.
With the money, the organization will develop a biodegradable and sustainable filter for single-use face masks.
The filters will be made from local and eco-friendly solutions.
To be in line with Natural Resources Canada's plan for PPE waste management, the organization will use sustainable and biodegradable material made from Canadian forest fibres for the filters.
To truly make this an all Canadian affair, pulp and paper mills here at home will manufacture the product and help create more money-making opportunities for the forest sector.
The federal government believes that this new product has the potential to lead the way on making sustainable, environmentally friendly PPE and expand the nation's markets internationally.
"Biodegradable masks made from Canada's sustainably sourced forests — just one example of what FPInnovations can do. The ingenuity of Canada's forest sector, keeping Canadians safer," said O'Regan.
Biodegradable masks made from 🇨🇦’s sustainably sourced forests. Just one example of what @FPInnovations can do.… https://t.co/43hH0HMN2A— Seamus O'Regan Jr (@Seamus O'Regan Jr)1596827411.0
There has been no timeline given for when the masks will start to be developed and made.
The same goes for when they'll be available for people to get and use in Canada.
Minister O’Regan announced a $1.3M investment to @FPInnovations for a #COVID19 response project to support the deve… https://t.co/GiXw9K26Xy— Natural Resources (@Natural Resources)1596823195.0
Back in May, the University of British Columbia announced that it had developed N95 masks that are fully biodegradable.
The masks are made solely from wood fibres found in B.C. like cedar, pine, spruce and more.
With September approaching, the Public Health Agency of Canada has released guidelines for going back to school safely.
That includes students and staff wearing face masks along with having other measures in place.
Ontario's plans have students from grade four to grade 12 wearing face coverings while at school starting in September.