According to GenFollower, around 8.3 billion metric tons (9.1 billion US tons) of plastic have been produced worldwide, and it is found that 9.1% of plastic waste is not recycled, and this is an alarming figure which is contaminating our natural environment. Although plastic is a very useful material that’s rigid, flexible and robust, it becomes waste right after use, and contaminate the environment.
In order to protect our environmental surroundings as well as to make the most of plastic material, recycling procedure is the best solution. Plastic is actually a common material that’s now frequently used by everyone on this planet. Plastic is used in several ways because it is compact and lightweight.
The continues maintenance required is little.
Typical plastic items that usually used are bottles, food packages, bags, and containers. When you buy grocery, food items or any other product from any store or shop, you’ll use plastic bags for carrying them.
Uses of Plastic
Plastics are commonly used in:
- Construction industry
- Packaging industry
- Disposable cutlery, etc.
Where does the Problem Lie?
The big problem with plastic is its disposal.
Plastic is made of polymer-bonded substances and isn’t biodegradable which means plastic won’t break down when it is buried. When plastic is burnt, it discharges detrimental chemical substances in smoke. Most of these chemical substances in smoke have negative effects on our ecosystem. Therefore, the necessity of recycling arises.
Straight into Something New
Recycling means making new items out of waste material.
Almost all types of plastic materials can’t be reprocessed. If we recycle those that can be reprocessed, the earth will be saved to a certain degree. Plastic recycling requires the process of recovering discard plastic, and this particular waste is then reprocessed to make new materials that could be more advanced than their original state.
When compared with many other materials such as metal and glass, recycling of plastic is complex and expensive. It’s because of the high molecular body weight of the large polymer-bonded chains that make the plastic material.
Heating plastic does not melt the polymer-bonded chains, and therefore, a tiresome and complicated procedure is required. Several types of plastic-type material can’t be mixed since they recycle separately.
Benefits of Recycling
Recycling plastic has many positive aspects.
- Use of non-renewable fuels is usually reduced by recycling as the production of new plastic materials requires more of these fuels.
- Use of electrical power is also reduced because already prepared plastic material is reused.
- Amount of plastic-type material that reaches the garbage dump sites are reduced. This may eradicate land pollution to some extent.
- Carbon pollutants are reduced because manufacturing units discharge more carbon.
Inverse Polymerization Procedure
The most popular procedure that is used for polymers recycle is the inverse polymerization procedure in which the polymers in the plastic material are transformed into monomers that are used in the manufacturing process.
Most of these chemical substances are then synthesized and purified to form new materials. Different polymers are usually transformed into oil in another process. The main advantage of this particular process is that any mixture of polymers can easily be used.
Steps Involved in Recycling
The standard steps which are involved in the particular recycling of plastic material are;
- Step 1: Accumulating plastic waste from industries and households.
- Step 2: Separating the plastic waste materials in different categories such as bags, containers, pet bottles, etc.
- Step 3: The plastic is cut into small pieces.
- Step 4: The small pieces are carefully cleaned for removing any unwanted particles or dirt contaminants on them.
- Step 5: The cleaned pieces are dissolved and poured into storage containers for recycling.
In order to aid this process, plastics that have identification code should be identified with the different polymers that are usually used in the manufacturing of plastic. This process should be started at home. When you’ve used that plastic item, you can easily use the same item for something else entirely. For instance, if you purchase a fruit juice bottle, you can easily use the plastic bottle as a storage bottle for reusing the PET bottle.