Disappearing Plastic?

12.06.2014 · Posted in Uncategorized

Each day, new technology is being developed to help improve our carbon footprint. Pollution is a large concern because trash and other harmful materials are damaging the environment and the homes of other organisms. Plastic materials fill up landfills because it can take hundreds of years to break down, and may not break down at all. A new work in progress at the North Dakota State University is to create plastic that can be broken down to reduce the amount of trash in landfills.

To make this special type of plastic, organic materials such as oilseed, cellulose, fructose, and sucrose are being made into the polymers of the plastic. When exposing this polymer to an ultraviolet light, researchers were able to break down the plastic back to its original molecules. This idea is groundbreaking in the field of sustainability because plastics used in containers and packaging could be broken down and made into another material after it is used. More research is needed on this idea to decide on the best materials to use to create the polymer, the best way to break this polymer down, and so on.

Another positive point to this new plastic material is that it is made of biomass. Fossil fuels are currently being used up faster than they can be replenished. Biomass is a renewable source and can be harvested without harming the environment. In the future, new plastic materials may be created to help reduce the pollution of landfills on our planet.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/11/141125101741.htm

Rachael McCabe

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