Comment on the Bioplastic PLA

Posted on February 3, 2012 by DrRossH in BioPlastics

This comment was posted on the Linked-In Biodegradability group. 
Please review the amount of petroleum PLA uses in its entire life cycle and you will see it uses more than normal plastics.  The increased use of corn for plastics and ethanol has help increase the size of the “Dead Zone” in the Gulf of Mexico because of the fertilizers. It is an area that nothing can live. It is about the size of New Jersey and is growing. My research also shows that about 30-40% of all corn ends up as plastic or ethanol thus increasing the cost of food, meat, eggs, etc. I am morally against a product that can cause people to go hungry. Especially when one examines the number of locations that can compost PLA . In the US there are about 98 such locations where PLA will properly degrade. And even those are decreasing as studies have shown that PLA does not break down in all commercial and municipal composts unless it is ground up first, which most composters do not want to do. So it ends up in landfills where it lasts as long as a normal plastic.