There are so many ways to reuse plastic that are better for the environment than using it over and over. In this article, we'll cover some of the pros and cons of biodegradable plastics like Carry bags.
Biodegradable Plastic Bags
Do you use plastic bags? If so, do they come with a warning label that they are designed to biodegrade in a landfill? Most likely not. Although these bags are specifically made for composting, only 20% of the plastic that enters landfills actually disintegrates.
The rest is usually burned or sent to oceans and lakes to create floating islands. Biodegradable plastics have been around for a while now, but it may be time for you to switch over if your current plastic bag isn't doing its job as efficiently as you'd like.
In the United States, about 10 billion plastic bags are produced each year. Some of these are then reused. However, a lot of them end up in landfills or being trashed at the bottom of rivers and streams.
The Association for Plastic Recycling finds that approximately 34% of those 10 billion plastic bags were not recycled. Instead, they ended up in some other form such as littering fields or national parks.
Pros and Cons of Biodegradable Plastic Bags
The idea of biodegradable or compostable plastic is to make it easier for the environment. In order to be able to break down, biodegradable materials need to be exposed to extreme heat. This means shopping bags and food wrappers will decompose faster when you're in a host country. Biodegradable plastics are known for being more expensive than regular plastic because they require an extra step during production.
Plastic is one of the most important materials in our society. It is used for many things, from furniture to food packaging. Unfortunately, plastic doesn't last forever, and some plastic can't be broken down by nature at all because it contains energy-intensive chemicals like petroleum. But there's good news on the horizon: biodegradable plastics are made with renewable materials like cornstarch instead of fossil fuels.