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Plastics

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News
  1. -01-02-10 D.C. First State to Charge a Fee for Bags (ABC News)
      "Starting today, the District of Columbia becomes the first major city in the nation to impose a surcharge on disposable paper and plastic bags commonly used at grocery and retail stores everywhere."

      "Some 89 billion plastic bags, sacks and wraps are used each year in the U.S., according to the American Chemistry Council." 01-10

  2. -03-15-09 Disposable Plastic Water Bottles Harmful? (U.S. News)
      " 'Awwk!' That was my first reaction when I read a recent E-mail about new dangers lurking in my disposable water bottle, the one with a No. 1 recycling code stamped on the bottom that sits on my desk waiting to be refilled. There's a new study from Germany out today that tested the water in those bottles and found estrogenlike compounds, most likely leaching out from the plastic. These water bottles don't contain the notorious chemical bisphenol A, which is found in hard water bottles, baby bottles, and the plastic coatings of metal cans. (Studies of BPA indicate that high exposures could increase the risk of reproductive health problems and possibly breast, prostate, and ovarian cancers, which is why six leading baby bottle makers last week decided to ban it from their products.) The soft bottles do, though, contain other estrogenlike compounds, still unidentified, that could have the same harmful effects as BPA." 03-09

  3. -04-16-08 Chemical in Plastic Bottles May Be Toxic (CBS News)
      "The federal National Toxicology Program said Tuesday that experiments on rats found precancerous tumors, urinary tract problems and early puberty when the animals were fed or injected with low doses of the plastics chemical bisphenol A." 04-08

  4. -09-06-08 Hot Liquids Are the Problem With BPA (Science Daily)
      "When it comes to Bisphenol A (BPA) exposure from polycarbonate plastic bottles, it's not whether the container is new or old but the liquid's temperature that has the most impact on how much BPA is released, according to University of Cincinnati (UC) scientists."

      "Scott Belcher, PhD, and his team found when the same new and used polycarbonate drinking bottles were exposed to boiling hot water, BPA, an environmental estrogen, was released 55 times more rapidly than before exposure to hot water." 09-08

  5. -09-06-08 Recycling Plastic Bottles (Science Daily)
      "Chemical Engineers developed a way to break down plastic bottles made from polyethylene terephthalate -- or PET, and recycle it back into high value uses like more soda bottles, water bottles, beer bottles." 09-08

  6. -09-06-08 Study: Plastics Increase Risk for Metabolic Syndrome (Science Daily)
      "New research from the University of Cincinnati (UC) implicates the primary chemical used to produce hard plastics—bisphenol A (BPA)—as a risk factor for metabolic syndrome and its consequences." 09-08

  7. -09-16-08 Study: Health Risks With Plastic in Bottles (MSNBC News)
      "The first major study of health effects in people from a chemical used in plastic baby bottles, food cans and a host of other products links it with possible risks for heart disease and diabetes."

      "It suggests a potential new concern about the safety of bisphenol A or BPA. And because of the possible public health implications, the results 'deserve scientific follow-up,' the study authors said."

      "But the study is preliminary, far from proof that the chemical causes heart disease and diabetes. Two Dartmouth College analysts of medical research said the study raises questions but provides no answers about whether the ubiquitous chemical is harmful." 09-08

  8. -09-28-08 Plastics and Birth Defects (U.S. News)
      "The urethra is supposed to emerge at the tip of the penis, but in 1 out of every 300 baby boys, its opening is elsewhere—sometimes just underneath the head, or midway down the shaft, or even at the base of the scrotum. No one knows what causes the defect, called hypospadias, but studies have shown that widespread chemicals called phthalates can reproduce it in rodents. Phthalates are used widely as softening agents in certain plastics, notably PVC, and are also found in some cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and a wide range of other products." 09-08

Papers
  1. -06-11-08 Student Discovers Microbes that Degrade Plastics (TheRecord.com)
      "Getting ordinary plastic bags to rot away like banana peels would be an environmental dream come true."

      "After all, we produce 500 billion a year worldwide and they take up to 1,000 years to decompose. They take up space in landfills, litter our streets and parks, pollute the oceans and kill the animals that eat them."

      "Now a Waterloo teenager has found a way to make plastic bags degrade faster -- in three months, he figures." 06-08

  2. BPA-Free Plastic Bottles (NalgeneChoice)
      Provides BPA-Free plastic bottles. Awesome Library does not endorse these products but provides them as examples. 09-08

  3. BPA-Free Stainless Steel Bottles (IsabellaCatalog.com)
      Provides stainless steel drinking bottles as an alternative to plastic. Awesome Library does not endorse these products but provides them as examples. 09-08

  4. Bioplastics (Time.com)
      "Bioplastics have been around for decades — Henry Ford made automotive parts out of corn and soybean oils for the Model T — and interest in these materials has tended to fluctuate with the price of oil. Of the two promising new varieties of bioplastic, one type — dubbed polylactic acid, or PLA — is clear in color and costs manufacturers about 20% more to use than petroleum-based plastic. The other — called polyhydroxyalkanoate, or PHA — biodegrades more easily but is more than double the price of regular plastic. Both bioplastics are made of fermented corn sugar, and both come with a major benefit: if disposed of properly, they won't stick around in landfills for thousands of years." 04-10

  5. Plastic Footprint (Time.com)
      "The U.S. produced 28 million tons of plastic waste in 2005--27 million tons of which ended up in landfills. Our food and water come wrapped in plastic. It's used in our phones and our computers, the cars we drive and the planes we ride in. But the infinitely adaptable substance has its dark side. Environmentalists fret about the petroleum needed to make it. Parents worry about the possibility of toxic chemicals making their way from household plastic into children's bloodstreams. Which means Haegele isn't the only person trying to cut plastic out of her life--she isn't even the only one blogging about this kind of endeavor. But those who've tried know it's far from easy to go plastic-free." 07-08

  6. Plastics Endanger Life in the Oceans (MSNBC News)
      "In a new report, Greenpeace said at least 267 species -- including seabirds, turtles, seals, sea lions, whales and fish -- are known to have suffered from entanglement or ingestion of marine debris." 11-06

  7. Scientists Worry About Health Risks in Plastic Containers (ABC News)
      "BPA — sometimes indicated by a number 7 on products — is found mostly in strong plastics, such as nondisposable water bottles, baby bottles and in the lining of canned foods."

      "BPA — sometimes indicated by a number 7 on products — is found mostly in strong plastics, such as nondisposable water bottles, baby bottles and in the lining of canned foods."

      "While the Food and Drug Administration and the American Plastics Council insist BPA is safe, an outspoken biology professor and other scientists believe it may bring all kinds of harm — such as cancer, early puberty, obesity and even attention-deficit disorder." 07-06

  8. Student Discovers Microbes that Degrade Plastics (TheRecord.com)
      "Getting ordinary plastic bags to rot away like banana peels would be an environmental dream come true."

      "After all, we produce 500 billion a year worldwide and they take up to 1,000 years to decompose. They take up space in landfills, litter our streets and parks, pollute the oceans and kill the animals that eat them."

      "Now a Waterloo teenager has found a way to make plastic bags degrade faster -- in three months, he figures." 06-08

  9. Study: By 2050, More Plastic Than Fish in Oceans (BBC News)
      "As England prepares to introduce a charge for plastic bags - long after many other countries - it's a good moment to catch up on the latest research into plastic in the oceans." 03-16

  10. Study: By 2050, More Plastic Than Fish in Oceans (The Guardian)
      "Over five trillion pieces of plastic are floating in our oceans says most comprehensive study to date on plastic pollution around the world." 03-16

  11. Study: By 2050, More Plastic Than Fish in Oceans (Washington Post)
      "Once it gets washed into waterways, the damage caused by plastics’ presence costs about $13 billion annually in losses for the tourism, shipping and fishing industries. It disrupts marine ecosystems and threatens food security for people who depend on subsistence fishing." 03-16

  12. World's Oceans Face Plastic Pollution Problem (PBS News)
      "Some scientists and environmentalists believe that more than 5 million square miles of the Pacific Ocean has become a soup of plastic confetti -- the remnants of plastic trash that travels on ocean currents from the world's shorelines. Now, researchers are trying to quantify the extent of the problem, and learn more about how plastic pollution affects fish, marine mammals and birds." 11-06

   
   


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