Plastic has become an important part of our life. We use it daily in the form of bags, covers, bottles, furniture and more. But there are problems connected with plastic that has given rise to environmental issues. Many are aiming to limit the use of plastic in the community because it is harmful to the environment. There are two types of plastics one is the Biodegradable plastic and the other is non-biodegradable.
The biodegradable plastic is the kind of plastic which the soil and minerals can break down. On the other hand, the non-biodegradable plastic is the one which cannot get broken down by soil and minerals so it will pose a threat to the environment. Therefore, here are some of the things we have to know about the use of the right plastic.
Here is the information we have gathered for you.
Table of Contents
What is bio-degradable plastic?
These kinds of plastics can get decomposed by the organisms and microbes. The plastic gets made with renewable raw materials, petrochemicals or micro-organisms. The biodegradable plastic is commonly made for disposable products like packages, crockery, cutlery and more. Today they are taking the place of conventional plastic items. Some countries have imposed strict law of using only bio-degradable plastic.
The benefits of bio-degradable plastic
– Easy management of solid waste
The main purpose of the biodegradable plastic is to limit the waste of conventional plastic. So many Governments have taken measures to restrict the use of plastic and replaced it with bio-degradable plastic. It is sustainable to compost the biodegradable plastic. They are also easier to process in industrial facilities. Therefore, biodegradable plastic ending up in landfills is better than conventional plastic wastes.
– Easy microbial action
The microbes can act on the biodegradable plastic so it is less harmful to the environment than the ordinary plastic. It happens through three steps such as acting on the plastic surface, hydrolysis, and mineralization. The biodegradable plastic leaves small footprint compared to the ordinary plastic. It also does not harm the environment. So the biodegradable plastic does not lead to environmental pollution.
What we should know about Bio-plastics?
- Not all biodegradable plastic is compostable
Many think that all biodegradable plastic is compostable. If we want to explain it in scientific terms biodegradable plastic is the one that can get broken down by the water, carbon dioxide and minerals. But not all bio-plastic has this feature. Some of the biodegradable plastic requires the right amount of temperature, light, water and air for the composting process. Sometimes after breaking down the plastic may leave behind the residues that could be harmful to the environment.
- Biodegradable plastics cannot naturally break down
The biodegradable plastics cannot break down naturally when they get disposed. They need to have the right condition for the process to take place. So that is why the biodegradable plastic gets broken down in industrial facilities. These places have the right condition for the plastic to break down in the right way.
- All bio-plastics need not be Biodegradable
Some of the Biodegradable plastics need not get broken down because they can get recycled for further use. The type of plastics like the Bio-Pet which gets created from the plant materials has the chemical substances in it that are similar to Polyethylene and Polyethylene Terephthalate.
- It is not possible to recycle all kinds of plastic
All types of bio-plastics do not have the same kind of pure recyclate streams. This is the substance that helps in the recycling process. Therefore for most of the times, it is not possible to recycle plastic products. It will result in higher amounts of carbon footprint.
The impact of plastic on the environment
Plastic pollution is the result of plastic affecting the environment. Plastic disposed on the soil and water can lead to disastrous results. It can threaten the life of the creatures living in soil and water and also humans.
- Plastic will break down into microplastics that could get eaten by creatures in the ocean. Then the fish will get eaten by humans that will harm them. There are many health consequences to this.
- The plastic in the soil can also affect the plants and trees that observe the minerals in it.
- The plastic on the ground can get eaten by cows and other cattle thereby affecting humans too.
How to dispose of plastic?
- The first thing you can do to dispose of plastic is by keeping it separate from other garbage.
- You can also reuse the plastic bags and covers without disposing of it.
- If you are going to shops do not take new covers from the shop. You can keep a jute bag or paper bags to carry the baggage.
- When disposing of plastic throw the waste in the non-biodegradable bins. This will help the cleaners to carry the waste to industrial plants to get recycled.
These are the important things we have to know about Biodegradable and non-biodegradable plastic. The correct way of disposing of the plastic items is the job of every household.