Paring back plastic-bag use BC CanadaPosted on April 27, 2012 by DrRossH in Plastic Waste News
As often happens and is encouraged by an unscrupulous oxodegradable industry, degradable is confused with biodegradable. Degradable bags are made from a plastic with an additive in it, that in the presence of air, causes an internal chemical reaction to go on in between the plastic molecules. It has nothing to do with biodegradable. The chemical reaction causes the plastic to fragment down into little pieces. Then you have the worse problem of little pieces of plastic blowing all over the place. Buried in a landfill this reaction does not go on and the plastic bag does not even break down. Oxo additives should be banned as they make either no difference or a worse problem.
Biodegradable is as it sounds is breaking down by biological activity. A very different and much more beneficial process. Biodegradation of bioplastics can occur in a compost facility if you can collect the compostable plastics and then find a commercial compost facility. Not an easy thing to do.
Landfill-biodegradable plastics are conventional plastics that have an additive in them that allow them to biodegrade when buried in a landfill. Unlike oxodegradable plastics above, landfill biodegradable plastics can be mainstream recycled. AS over 80% of our plastic waste goes to a landfill, this is the option that makes the most common sense.