The Necessity to Use Plastic
I got an assignment from Mr. Faiz, about Plastic. Okay, this is a big topic and many people in the world and also in Indonesia try to find how to solve this. talking about plastic, what do you think about the use of plastic ? how the impact ? okay let we read the article below.
With reference to plastic, In this era, plastic has often been used by people for daily needs. The use of plastic in this era has largely replaced household materials made of bamboo, wood, rattan and many others. People prefer household appliances made of plastic for their needs because plastic is felt to be easier and more durable. In addition, the price that can be reached is one of the most compelling reasons why they prefer plastic. Behind the ease of getting it durable and the price is cheap, can plastic cause problems for humans? Why did that happen? Then how can we be able to minimize things like that?
To reduce our misunderstanding of plastic, we should know first what is the meaning of plastic ? The easy definition of plastic is plastic as a branched or linear polymer which can be melted or softened using fire or by using other heat temperatures. In other words, plastic has a lower degree of crystallization than fiber.
A Brief History of Plastics
The plastics revolution starts with a victorian billiard ball, because plastics have taken on a bewildering number of shape and colors and they’ve change our world in bewildered way, not all of those for the better a problem. In 1907 Bakelite the first truly sinthetic plastics was invented in New York, by the 1930s all sorts of new plastics were being created.
During the Second World War parachutes were made from nylon, hand grenades encased in Bakelite and the cockpits of airplanes were made from perspex. The war ended and the huge industrial plastic machinery was redirected at consumers, the living room was transformed, decade by decade as plastics colonized our homes.
In Addition by the 1960s plastics was a big enough phenomenon to enter pop culture. The world started to get a little more colorful and a lot more varied. On the other hand, there was a shift durable hard-wearing plastics made to last where it Clips by throwaway single-use plastics. From the 1980s plastic bags and bottles started become commonplace, their popularity came at an environmental cost.
Single-use plastics are the focus of skies and ocean rescue campaign for the damage they do to our waters. Plastics changed the 20th century profoundly, the job of the 21st is dealing with that legacy.
Top 5 Facts about Plastics
1. Lego Wants to Stops Using Petroleum Based Plastic
In an ambitious but respectable move by Lego, the world famous Danish toy company has set a goal to completely rehaul the production process and halt their use of abs an oil-based plastic by 2030. This proves to be a daunting challenge as Lego produces over 60 billion abs based bricks a year and must invests millions of dollars into finding a new oil-free alternative that will still feel and look exactly the same. Luckily there are various alternatives in the production of plastic, scientists from Stanford University have found a way to produce plastic from inedible plant material and carbon dioxide a concoction that could potentially replace petroleum-based plastic, there also exists a synthetic plastic called Galilei which comes from protein found in milk called casein and fortunately Galilei cannot be molded and production stoped during World War Two as milk was rationed and used as food.
2. Plastic is Bad for Your Health in Unexpected Ways
As if plastic wasn’t controversial enough already research has found that phthalates which are used in plastic products can cause birth defect if pregnant women are exposed to a high quantity of them, this can cause intellectual deficits and children developmental and behavioral issues and even genital abnormalities and males. New research done at UCLA ( The University of California ) also shows that the Chemical Bhispenol S a replacement for the controversial Bhispenol A can alter reproductive system and accelerate embryonic development. Their experiments were conducted on zebra fish and caused the egg hatching process to speed up on naturally resulting in a premature birth and as for that diabolical plastic packaging that everyone hates. however, nobody seems to do anything about according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission over 6.000 American are sent to the emergency room every year from injuries from trying to open these packages.
3. Plastic Waste Could Move to the Depths of the Ocean Because of Plankton Feces
It’s no secret now that there’s a crazy overabundance of plastic litter in the ocean, this contentious matter has been the topic of discussions for years but the situation could get a whole lot worse a recent study published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, suggests that the microscopic feces of zooplankton could be filled with plastic, these zooplankton eat tiny pieces of plastic that are smaller than one millimeter and when they defecate these micro plastics mix with their feces and float to the ocean depths, it’s estimated that there are over five trillion pieces of micro plastics currently floating in the water, this is also problematic because many creatures ingest plankton as a food source as you can imagine consuming plastic causes a host of problems on an ecological scale.
4. New Techniques are Being Tested to Reduce Sea-Based Plastic Pollution
So to speak, lucky for our oceans and the creatures living within them there are ideas that will hopefully reduce the massive amount of plastic waste currently floating in the water, a group called the ocean cleanup currently have an idea to place long floating barriers in the water that can catch and stop trash as it floats by the ocean currents, once trapped this debris will then be extracted back to land for recycling. The company is preparing for deployment in 2020 and they claim that a 100 kilometer long cleanup array can remove up to 40% of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch over a 10 year period, there is also a device called the sea bin which aim to being use by late 2016 effectively acting like a fish tank filter the sea bin literally sucks up trash another harmful debris while spitting out clean water back into the ocean, it operates 24/7 and claims to be completely safe for fish and other aquatic animals.
5. Plastic Decomposes Much Faster in the Ocean than on Land
On land plastic clutters landfills, as it takes hundreds of years for a piece of plastic to fully decomposed. however, put a piece of plastic in the ocean and degrades surprisingly quickly, researchers from neon University have discovered that polystyrene decomposes and water within a year under the right weather conditions. Interestingly enough there are some surprising way in which plastic can safely decompose.
POSITIVE IMPACT OF PLASTIC:
- Durability: One of the reasons that plastic sees wide application across several verticals is the fact that it is extremely durable and can withstand natural elements better than most other substances. Depending on the type of plastic and make, it can last anywhere from 50 years to 1000 years and that’s a lot, whichever way you look at it.
- Longer shelf life: Plastic is just perfect for storing perishables; bottles with a plastic seal on the top form an airtight seal that effectively helps to keep the food products fresh and prevents cross contamination. This is why plastic is often the preferred packaging material where perishable food materials are concerned.
- Food safety: with stronger airtight seals in the form of plastic, manufacturers are able to transport food products to other locations across the world, while ensuring that the product in question is safe from any cross contamination.
- Lightweight: Another factor that weighs heavily in plastic’s favour is that it is lightweight and quite strong. This is one of the main reasons that plastic is utilized over other materials when it comes to transporting large heavy packages, as opposed to say, metal. With plastic crates, you can reuse them to transport other stuff, or use it to store items but the point is that being extremely lightweight and strong, makes it the preferred choice for most companies.
NEGATIVE IMPACT OF PLASTIC:
- Toxicity: Companies utilize several toxic substances to create plastic to the designed hardness — the problem though is that plastics are susceptible to heat damage and cannot withstand a sudden drastic increase in temperature. And as the temperature rises, this can cause the plastic to release harmful substances in the form of noxious gases. This is why it is advised that you recycle your plastic containers after usage and do not reuse the same often, as this can cause the plastic to decompose after a while and in the process, release these toxic substances into the environment.
- Pollution: Currently we utilize plastic in almost everything and naturally our garbage collection points are overflowing with plastic waste, from bottles to plastic bags. The problem though is that plastic is extremely durable and meant to last anywhere from 50 to 1000 years. In other words, w need to find an effective way to dispose of the plastic for the moment it is causing widespread pollution that has started to affect even natural food chains with obvious consequences.
- Energy: A recent study clearly highlighted the fact that it costs the US taxpayer more to manufacture plastic bottles and to recycle the same. In fact, it was estimated that the amount of energy taken to manufacture bottled drinking water should be enough to power nearly 190000 homes all year around. That should help put things in perspective and underscore our need for a viable alternative.
- Suffocation: As landfills fill up, plastic eventually finds its way to the ocean and at various points; the plastic garbage has formed a sort of cover that’s almost the size of Africa which is staggering indeed. With more plastic refuse being added to such Gyres daily, it is literally choking the life out of our oceans and suffocating the organisms within. It is time that the governments took effective measures to protect and preserve the environment.
These are some of the positive and negative effects of plastic; at the moment, plastic is essential but one hopes that a viable alternative will be found soon. Moreover, governments are well poised to take effective action to limit these gyres and prevent the suffocation of all life in the oceans. It is time that we as a society took affirmative action instead of just having a discussion on the same before we run out of time.
9 Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Use
We’ve all seen the headlines about the huge environmental problems caused by single-use plastics. Governments and corporations have a responsibility to take action. but what can we do to cut down our personal plastic footprints?
Here’s our 9 top tips:
1. Carry a reusable bottle
In the UK we use over 35 million plastic bottles every day! Carrying a reusable bottle is a great way to cut your plastic use and save money too.
2. Say no to plastic straws
Plastic straws are bad news for our oceans. Next time you order a drink, think about whether you need a straw and if you don’t, just say no! You can also ask your local pub to stop adding straws to drinks as standard and offer paper straws to those who want one.
3.Take a reusable coffee cup
2.5 billion coffee cups are thrown away every year in the UK and less than 1 in 400 are recycled. Carry a reusable cup with you — some cafes even offer a small discount if you use your own cup.
4. Avoid excessive food packaging
Whether it’s making different choices in the supermarket or choosing a different place to shop, we can all try and cut down the plastic we buy. And as an added bonus, loose fruit and veg is often cheaper than pre-packaged alternatives.
5. Use refill stations for detergents
There are some products where it’s difficult to avoid a plastic container (for example washing up liquid or laundry liquid). the good news is that there are an increasing amount of places where you can refill your old bottles.
6. Say no to disposable cutlery
We’ve all been there caught out in a cafe or at a train station when we’ve bought a salad or a yogurt but the only cutlery on offer is plastic! Whilst it’s hard to plan for every opportunity, consider carrying a spoon or fork (or spork!) in your bag or keeping cutlery in your desk at work.
7. Get your milk delivered
Although the early morning sound of a milk float is not as common as it used to be, there are still lots of places in the UK where you can get milk delivered in glass bottles which are then collected and reused.
8. Avoid microbeads
The good news is that the UK government have announced a ban on microbeads! However until the ban comes into force in 2018, there will still be products on the shelves, so keep checking those labels before you buy and avoid products containing polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and nylon.
9. Carry a shopping bag
Since the plastic bag charge was introduced in England, there’s been a massive 85% drop in their use. Many of us are used to carrying an extra bag with us if you still find it hard to remember, try a foldaway one that you can carry in your normal day bag.
The conclusion is that plastic is indeed dangerous for the environment or can also be called environmentally unfriendly, but it cannot be denied alsothat plastic is an item of human needs at this time which is also relatively affordable compared to other materials, its practical and hygienic use for plastic that is indeed used to wrap food or drinks is also one of the factors that influence this plastic is still often used, many pros and cons discuss about this plastic, there are those who agree and not a few who also do not agree to use plastic in a long period of time in the future. For the time being, there is a lot of plastic that is not used or even has become garbage, some of which are not easy to manage.
Many thin plastics such as plastic bags and which have been divided into several parts, it makes plastic waste especially plastic bags difficult to process. For myself, I strongly agree if the use of plastic in Indonesia or the world is minimized or reduced so that there is no continuous environmental pollution and even getting worse with increasing population density, even the amount of waste produced per head of household is increasing annually.
But not all plastic just ends up as rubbish, much like the example above that plastic can be processed into a variety of crafts or even a source of energy. So we as the next generation of young people must be able to find solutions and also innovation that are good and remain environmentally friendly in managing this plastic waste.
I think that’s enough of the material I wrote above that I have done as well as possible and thank you :)