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The sea of plastic...

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I agree about the fact that it won't be profitable for companies, which is why it likely won't be done; however that is why I suggested a ban on new plastic. If they have to collect existing plastic because they will lose big chunks of money in fines, then it is more likely that they would invest in ocean cleaning practices. Additionally it is up to consumers to make companies do this by protesting, boycotting and signing petitions that hold them accountable. 

I don't understand the rational behind your last comment to michel123456, if you don't mind elaborating that would be greatly appreciated.

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On 11/26/2018 at 2:49 AM, coffeesippin said:

Interesting map.  It wouldn't have a White Supremacist as author, would it?

Probably. All information need to be checked twice.

It is really a HUGE topic. Plastic industries & industries related to plastics are colossal. Billions of dollars, million people, almost all kind of products are involved. So far I have seen that WWF focuses on single use plastics that float. The plastics that sink to the bottom are not priorities because the (white supremacist) tourist does not see it on his (private) beach.

The commonly agreed solution to plastic waste is circular economy. Re-use, recycle.

Ban is not an option, except maybe for straws & plastic bags that are produced by small factories of 3 or 5 workers in all kind of countries (China, Pakistan & India included). If they go bankrupt (the factories), nobody will care.

 

Edited by michel123456

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!

Moderator Note

The discussion of "white supremacy" is totally off topic. No more discussion of that comment, please.

 

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I was reading an article about building a floating city in the ocean.  I have to wonder if the plastic already floating in the ocean could be utilized as a building material.  Collect plastic melt it with sunlight using parabolic mirrors on site in the ocean and create floating blocks.  Loosely connect blocks together and plant mangrove trees into the resulting floating creations.  The mangrove trees will eventually root everything together into a flexible floating mass.

 

Get grants paying x dollars per ton of plastic removed and utilized and sell the islands thereby created..  What does a small tropical island go for these days?   With three million tons of plastic and more being added each day into the Pacific gyre there is plenty of material to make some sizable floating islands in international waters.  What would people pay to have an island they could buy and create a new country out of?

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58 minutes ago, MountainGuardian said:

I was reading an article about building a floating city in the ocean.  I have to wonder if the plastic already floating in the ocean could be utilized as a building material.  Collect plastic melt it with sunlight using parabolic mirrors on site in the ocean and create floating blocks.  Loosely connect blocks together and plant mangrove trees into the resulting floating creations.  The mangrove trees will eventually root everything together into a flexible floating mass.

 

Get grants paying x dollars per ton of plastic removed and utilized and sell the islands thereby created..  What does a small tropical island go for these days?   With three million tons of plastic and more being added each day into the Pacific gyre there is plenty of material to make some sizable floating islands in international waters.  What would people pay to have an island they could buy and create a new country out of?

This maybe of interest.....https://www.scienceforums.net/topic/118655-this-is-stunning-with-an-awe-inspiring-7-minute-video-i-suggest-all-to-watch/?tab=comments#comment-1100314

 

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Given the ubiquity of microplastics (e.g. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-017-0116), I think the horse has largely bolted regarding plastic pollution. A layer of microscopic plastic covers the planet, to the extent that detection of plastics in sediments is a key indicator of the Anthropocene. Microplastics have been detected in significant quantities in the bodies of crustaceans living at the bottom of the Mariana Trench

Furthermore, entire oceanic ecosystems have developed in association with large ocean garbage patches. We risk further impact on already declining abundances of oceanic organisms if we decide now to retrieve oceanic plastics.  

That's not to say we shouldn't reduce continued plastic pollution, but the problem has advanced to the point where simply cleaning up the mess is not so simple.

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Wouldn't biodegradable plastics solve the problem ( assuming they don't degrade into something even more harmful ) ?

You could have 'grocery' bags and food/beverage containers degrade after weeks to months, while plastics used in appliances/construction would degrade after months to years ( as these are less likely to end up in waterways ).

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37 minutes ago, MigL said:

Wouldn't biodegradable plastics solve the problem ( assuming they don't degrade into something even more harmful ) ?

You could have 'grocery' bags and food/beverage containers degrade after weeks to months, while plastics used in appliances/construction would degrade after months to years ( as these are less likely to end up in waterways ).

There are a number of limitations. While they eventually degrade (under the right conditions) many persist for a long time and in waterways may not degrade there (or in the ocean). Some may degrade faster, but may not be very resilient. As a whole from what I understand there are no clear solutions available (yet).

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On ‎10‎/‎19‎/‎2018 at 10:03 PM, mistermack said:

I remember reading a few years ago that there were trials for motorway surfaces that reduced spray by incorporating drainage channels in the actual tarmac. 

I first came across it in a downpour heading into London on the M40 somewhere near Beaconsfield. It was a stretch of about two miles, and it was like suddenly coming out of fog into daylight, it was so amazingly effective. I don't know how it was done, or if they used plastic, but it was the most striking effect, absolutely amazing. Has anyone else seen anything like it? What made me think of it was watching the Formula 1 practise session a few minutes ago, and noticing the fog of spray that they kick up.

That should reduce road noise too I think. It gives a route for compressed air to escape from being trapped and forces from under a tyre which can give louder road noise (I think, iirc). I assume the water gets forced through the channels rather than getting blasted and sprayed up behind the car.

A different friend of mine had the idea quite some time back to include soluble crystals into the tar mac mix (like rocksalt crystals or something) so that they would dissolve out later and wash away leaving the tarmac with little holes. The idea was reduced noise and better drainage from these channels/holes left in the surface for compressed air or water to escape through. 
 

 

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Why not to ban plastic products if it's replaceable?!

If only Trump bans them including  import of plastic products, the world'd be saved from plastic... 

 

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15 hours ago, harlock said:

Why not to ban plastic products if it's replaceable?!

In many cases there would be increased cost or other issues with alternatives. They may not be as durable, require more volume to ship or increase the product weight.

There some alternatives that might work. Leaves, Kelp Alginate. Mainly going to depend on what is locally available or possible to ship far enough.

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21 minutes ago, Endy0816 said:

In many cases there would be increased cost or other issues with alternatives. They may not be as durable, require more volume to ship or increase the product weight.

There some alternatives that might work. Leaves, Kelp Alginate. Mainly going to depend on what is locally available or possible to ship far enough.

Howere if plastic products are banned, their alternatives'd fill the market.  

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3 minutes ago, harlock said:

Howere if plastic products are banned, their alternatives'd fill the market.  

A ban might work for single use plastics. Provided it doesn't need to last long we could probably swap those out easily enough.

 

Costs and physics are the main issue with a general ban. Reason why plastic became widely used in the first place.

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1 hour ago, Endy0816 said:

A ban might work for single use plastics. Provided it doesn't need to last long we could probably swap those out easily enough.

 

Costs and physics are the main issue with a general ban. Reason why plastic became widely used in the first place.

A big part of the problem is things aren't built to last, which is good for profits and jobs but bad for the environment.

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19 hours ago, harlock said:

If only Trump bans them including  import of plastic products, the world'd be saved from plastic... 

 

I know Trump brags a lot but I don't think is something he can do.

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Posted (edited)

Plastic is made of oil (and can be made of gas, or organic remains, or GMO microbes (they just have to expel ethylene) ).

D.T. is supporter of oil industry. Somebody banning production, import and usage of plastic, would be the worsthest enemy of oil industry..

I don't think so banning plastics is a good idea. People would cut the all trees instead, creating different kinds of problems.

Edited by Sensei

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18 hours ago, StringJunky said:

A big part of the problem is things aren't built to last, which is good for profits and jobs but bad for the environment. 

Well can be good if replacing consumes less resources than repairing, but still have negative consequences.

Eventually I figure there will only be bioplastics, recycling and trash dump mining(high tech mudlarking). We can definitely help by at least reducing what is all getting into the environment at large though.

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