IBM is partnering with Stanford University in a research effort to develop eco-friendly plastics.
The pair have detailed a new recycling process that could allow manufacturers to better process and reuse plastic computer parts created from plants.
The research has found that organic compounds can be used to replace conventional synthetic materials in the manufacture of the polymers used to create plastics. In doing so, researchers believe that new biodegradable plastics can be constructed.
"We are exploring new methods of applying technology and our expertise in materials science to create a sustainable, environmentally sound future," said Josephine Cheng, IBM fellow and research vice president.
"The development of new families of organic catalysts brings more versatility to green chemistry, and opens the door for novel applications such as making biodegradable plastics, improving the recycling process and drug delivery."
The use of environmentally friendly materials has become a major focal point in efforts to improve the green credentials of the technology sector.
Groups such as Greenpeace have prodded vendors for years to cut the use of potentially harmful materials, while hardware vendors have stepped up the use of recyclable metal casings and reduced packaging materials.
Uber manager raised concerns about self-driving vehicle programme five days before fatal Uber crash in Arizona
Uber manager complained about series of near misses by autonomous vehicles that had not been properly investigated
Privilege escalation bug already being exploited in the wild
NASA's Voyager 2 probe set to reveal secrets of space beyond the heliosphere as it goes interstellar
The probe is now more than 18 billion kilometres from Earth, with equipment enabling it to reveal some of the secrets of interstellar space
Four glaciers located west of massive Totten glacier have lost almost three metres of ice in height since 2008