NEDO Silicon Valley Foresight Seminars: Inventing the Future

Oct 24, 2022    USAsia Venture Partners team organized this event.

NEDO Silicon Valley Foresight Seminars: Inventing the Future

~Innovation in Materials for the Circular Economy~

Monday | October 24, 2022 | 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM (PT)

Event Overview

You are cordially invited to the inaugural session of NEDO Silicon Valley Foresight Seminar Series featuring Innovation in Materials for the Circular Economy. This is the first of four seminars: the next dates will be December 2022, February 2023, and March 2023. The Inventing the Future series will explore a range of topics to advance the goal of achieving a sustainable future with Net Zero Emissions by 2050.

Session I. Innovation in Materials for the Circular Economy

The goal of the Circular Economy is to solve problems including climate change, pollution and environmental degradation. This can be accomplished by stepping back from the conventional approach for how we make things today to inventing new materials, methods and designs that plan ahead for using non-toxic ingredients to make the products we use every day and to design them so that they can be recovered and reused or deconstructed and reconstructed into new products enabling the materials to be used over and over again, without creating waste.

During this interactive event, you’ll learn:

  • What is the circular economy and what are its benefits

  • Who is innovating in this area and their examples

  • What are the opportunities and future visions of material science

Also, you will have an opportunity to network in person to share your thoughts and experiences with peers and to speak in-depth with each of the panelists after the formal presentation.

Date: Monday, October 24, 2022

Time: 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Location: Plug and Play Tech Center, 440 N Wolfe Rd, Sunnyvale, CA 94085

Cost: Free but registration is required


Elizabeth Bridges – Director of Design Research of Bioforcetech

Joel Pastore – VP Business Development of MicroByre

Xandra van Alebeek – Head of Business Operations, Full Cycle Bioplastics

Marianna Grossman (Moderator) – Senior Consultant & Advisor on Sustainability, USAsia Venture Partners

Please register here.  Looking forward to the participation of many people who are interested in trends in innovation for the realization of a circular economy.

Featured Panelists and Moderator

Elizabeth Bridges is the Director of Design Research Bioforcetech transforms organic waste into biochar called OurCarbon which fixes carbon into a stable material that has many beneficial uses. In the process emissions are eliminated as compared with traditional methods of managing organic waste and the carbon can be sequestered while providing additional value as a soil amendment, pigment or an additive to strengthen concrete and make it carbon neutral.

Joel Pastore is the VP Business Development for MicroByre. The MicroByre team makes pets out of bacteria! With friends like these, who needs petroleum? MicroByre’s mission is to domesticate non-model bacteria, the most efficient and effective way to support their partners’ efforts to solve climate challenges.  MicroByre discovers and enables new chemical processing pathways to help companies repurpose a wide variety of biomass streams into higher value-added chemistries to replace petroleum based alternatives. Joel has spent over 20 years developing and implementing successful growth strategies to market and sell sustainably focused chemical solutions to industrial customers while working at Cargill, Elevance, Ecolab and Nalco. He holds an MBA from the Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University.

Xandra van Alebeek is head of business operations for Full Cycle Bioplastics, an innovative technology company converting organic waste into compostable and biodegradable bioplastic solutions. This bioplastic can act as a replacement to petroleum-based plastics.  With a knack for making visions into reality, Alexandra (Xandra), loves infusing operational excellence into climate-focused companies. Xandra earned Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees from Stanford University in Earth Systems with a concentration in sustainable food systems. She also has a culinary degree from Ballymaloe Cookery School in Ireland and has spent time working as a professional chef. Xandra resides in San Francisco, California.

Marianna Grossman is Senior Consultant & Advisor on Sustainability, USAsia Venture Partners and Managing Partner of Minerva Ventures, investing and advising on solutions for a resilient future – bringing people and institutions together across sectors to collaborate, invent, fund and implement solutions that enhance sustainability and reverse climate change. Marianna led Sustainable Silicon Valley for seven years, after roles in the automotive, computer, and semiconductor industries. Recent publication: Sustainable Electricity II: A Conversation on Tradeoffs, Chapter on Silicon Valley Corporate Case Studies on Clean Energy Innovation. Service includes: California’s Climate Adaptation Action Plan Technical Advisory Group 2016; Sustainable and Resilient Resources Roundtable; the international Balaton Group; Board President, Transportation Choices for Sustainable Communities; Environmental Entrepreneurs; and, climate action councils for Palo Alto and Mountain View. Degrees: BA in Policy Studies, Dartmouth College and an MBA from Yale School of Management.