HICCUPS - Highly-Innovative technology demonstration for bio-based CO2 Capture and Utilization for production of bulk Plastic applicationS

The HICCUPS project proposes a resource efficient solution to convert biogenic CO2 emissions from wastewater treatment plants into bio-based plastics for packaging. At the heart of the HICCUPS concept lie innovative technologies for the capture, conversion to monomers and polymerization of CO2 to produce PLGA. These polymers with excellent water & gas barrier properties are fully biodegradable and 100% made from renewable feedstock which makes them a promising candidate for the replacement of fossil polyethylene. To demonstrate the potential of PLGA, packaging materials will be produced from PLGA film coated paper and molded plastic. Examples of these types of packaging are paper cups, take out boxes and sealed plastic trays for perishable food from the supermarket. The HICCUPS technology results in a GHG reduction based on CO2 utilization, replacement of fossil feedstock and by industrial electrification. In the HICCUPS project, the complete value chain from biogenic CO2 to polymer end use will be demonstrated, including downstream processing and end of life studies. Recycling and (marine) biodegradability tests will show this sustainable plastic will not accumulate in nature. To maximize impact of the HICCUPS technology, digital modelling, life-cycle assessments and a full business case analysis are initiated in the early stage of the project to provide targets for technology development. Besides the reduction of GHG emissions, HICCUPS will have societal impact by creating awareness through interaction with policy makers and civil society and the creation of new jobs in innovative fields. By targeting an industry as essential as wastewater treatment, HICCUPS aims to create a concept that can impact society and contribute to climate change mitigation, assessed by an integrated monitoring system of the carbon removal potential, on a big scale and serves as a crucial first step in upscaling this new solution to a flagship-scale commercial plant.


Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or Circular Bio-based Europe Joint Undertaking. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them

Project details

Scientific responsability: Monica Bertoldo

Funding source: HORIZON EUROPE


Start date: 01/09/2023 - end date: 31/08/2027

EU contribution: 4.999.970,50 €

EU contribution to UniFe: 343.847,50 €


  • Avantium Chemicals Bv , Netherland
  • Fundacion Tecnologica Advantx, Spain
  • Universiteit van Amsterdam, Netherland
  • Institut National de Recherche pour l'agriculture, l'alimentation et l'environnement, France
  • Acciona Agua Sa, Spain
  • Nova-Institut fur Politische und Okologische Innovation Gmbh, Germany
  • Teknologian Tutkimuskeskus Vtt Oy, Finland
  • Universita degli Studi di Ferrara, Italy
  • Nuevas Tecnologias para el Desarrollo de Packaging y Productos Agroalimentarios con Componente Plastica Sl. Spain
  • Aqualung Carbon Capture As, Norway
  • Sintef As, Norway
  • Walki Oy, Finland