Popular Plastics News and Current Events

Popular Plastics News and Current Events, Plastics News Articles.
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Bacteria-killing gel heals itself while healing you
McMaster researchers have developed a novel new gel made entirely from bacteria-killing viruses. The anti-bacterial gel, which can be targeted to attack specific forms of bacteria, holds promise for numerous beneficial applications in medicine and environmental protection. (2019-07-25)

Engineering a plastic-eating enzyme
Scientists have engineered an enzyme which can digest some of our most commonly polluting plastics, providing a potential solution to one of the world's biggest environmental problems. (2018-04-16)

Texas A&M AgriLife study shows BPA risk factor for inflammatory bowel disease
A recent study in a preclinical model of inflammatory bowel disease shows dietary exposure to bisphenol-A, or BPA, found in polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins, can increase mortality and worsen its symptoms. (2018-07-05)

Plastic teabags release microscopic particles into tea
Many people are trying to reduce their plastic use, but some tea manufacturers are moving in the opposite direction: replacing traditional paper teabags with plastic ones. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have discovered that a soothing cup of the brewed beverage may come with a dose of micro- and nano-sized plastics shed from the bags. Possible health effects of ingesting these particles are currently unknown, the researchers say. (2019-09-25)

Many second hand plastic toys could pose a risk to children's health, study suggests
Scientists at the University of Plymouth have discovered high concentrations of hazardous elements including antimony, barium, bromine, cadmium, chromium and lead in many second hand plastic toys. (2018-01-26)

Swansea scientists discover greener way of making plastics
A new catalyst that allows for the conversion of the green house gas carbon dioxide to an industrial precursor for many plastics has been developed by scientists in the Energy Safety Research Institute at Swansea University as an alternative to using petroleum raw materials. (2018-04-11)

Brain development disorders in children linked to common environmental toxin exposures
Exposures of pregnant women and children to common thyroid-hormone-disrupting toxins may be linked to the increased incidence of brain development disorders, according to a review published in Endocrine Connections. The review describes how numerous, common chemicals can interfere with normal thyroid hormone actions, which are essential for normal brain development in fetuses and young children, and suggests a need for greater public health intervention. (2018-03-23)

Could cleaning up beaches make Americans better off?
Cleaning up beaches could boost local economies in addition to preserving natural treasures and animal habitats, Ohio State study finds. (2018-02-26)

Minimizing exposure to harmful flame retardant chemicals in waste foams and plastics
Continued research and new policies and practices to ensure proper use and disposal of foam and plastic products that contain potentially harmful flame retardant chemicals are needed to minimize health risks from environmental exposure to humans and animals. (2018-01-29)

Organic fertilizers are an overlooked source of microplastic pollution
Organic fertilizers from biowaste fermentation act as a vehicle for microplastic particles to enter the terrestrial environment, with the amount of microplastic particles differing based on pre-treatment methods and plant type, a new study shows. (2018-04-04)

An update on the road to better plastics for a sustainable future
Three Perspectives and an Editorial highlight issues and advances in developing plastics that are more sustainable and easier to recycle. (2017-11-16)

Uranium to replace plastic? Chemistry breakthrough could pave the way for new materials
Uranium can perform reactions that previously no one thought possible, which could transform the way industry makes bulk chemicals, polymers, and the precursors to new drugs and plastics, according to new findings from The University of Manchester. (2017-12-01)

Scientific advances can make it easier to recycle plastics
Researchers report new approaches could dramatically increase the amount of plastic waste that can be successfully recycled. (2017-11-17)

An eco-friendly alternative to recycling e-waste
As consumers toss aside old cell phones, tablets and laptops to keep up with the latest technology, landfills are becoming full of the old devices. To address this buildup, scientists are attempting to recover valuable plastics from this electronic waste, or 'e-waste.' Now, one group reports in ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering that they have found an eco-friendly alternative to current methods. (2018-03-14)

Breaking the chain: Catalyzing a green future for chemistry
Osaka University researchers create catalyst for refining chemicals in plant waste, allowing a green way to produce valuable raw materials. (2017-11-06)

'Infinitely' recyclable polymer shows practical properties of plastics
The world fell in love with plastics because they're cheap, convenient, lightweight and long- lasting. For these same reasons, plastics are now trashing the Earth. Colorado State University chemists have announced in the journal Science another major step toward waste-free, sustainable materials that could one day compete with conventional plastics. (2018-04-26)

More bioplastics do not necessarily contribute to climate change mitigation
Bioplastics are often promoted as an environmentally and climate-friendly alternative to conventional petroleum-based plastics. However, a recent study from the University of Bonn suggests that shifting to plant-based plastics could have less positive effects than expected. Specifically, an increased consumption of bioplastics in the following years is likely to generate increased greenhouse gas emissions from cropland expansion on a global scale. The study is published in the scientific Journal ''Environmental Research Letters''. (2018-12-07)

New polymer additive could revolutionize plastics recycling
Only 2 percent of the 78 million tons of manufactured plastics are currently recycled into similar products because polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), which account for two-thirds of the world's plastics, have different chemical structures and cannot be efficiently repurposed together. That could all change with a discovery by a Cornell University research team. (2017-02-23)

Polymer researchers discover path to sustainable and biodegradable polyesters
Researchers at Virginia Tech have synthesized a biodegradable alternative to polyolefins using a new catalyst and the polyester polymer, and this breakthrough could eventually have a profound impact on sustainability efforts. (2018-06-01)

Algae could feed and fuel planet with aid of new high-tech tool
Vast quantities of medicines and renewable fuels could be produced by algae using a new gene-editing technique, a study suggests. (2017-12-07)

Biorenewable, biodegradable plastic alternative synthesized by CSU chemists
Colorado State University polymer chemists have taken another step toward a future of high-performance, biorenewable, biodegradable plastics. Publishing in Nature Communications, the team led by Professor of Chemistry Eugene Chen describes chemical synthesis of a polymer called bacterial poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) ­- or P3HB. The compound shows early promise as a substitute for petroleum plastics in major industrial uses. (2018-06-22)

Trawl of Red Sea surface waters finds little plastic
The Red Sea has relatively low amounts of floating plastic debris in its surface waters due to fewer sources or faster removal. (2018-01-08)

Macromolecular order in plastic kingdom
A team of researchers has found out how the regularity of polypropylene molecules and thermal treatment affect the mechanical properties of the end product. New insights in the study make it possible to synthesize a material with predetermined properties, such as elasticity or hardness. (2018-02-01)

Sustainable 'plastics' are on the horizon
A new Tel Aviv University study describes a process to make bioplastic polymers that don't require land or fresh water -- resources that are scarce in much of the world. The resulting material is biodegradable, produces zero toxic waste and recycles into organic waste. (2018-12-24)

How to take the 'petro' out of the petrochemicals industry
University of Toronto Engineering researchers chart a course for how an alternative technology -- renewable electrosynthesis -- could usher in a more sustainable chemical industry, and ultimately enable us to leave much more oil and gas in the ground. (2019-04-25)

Bio-renewable process could help 'green' plastic
Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions. To change that, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) scientists are trying to take the pliable nature of plastic in another direction, developing new and renewable ways of creating plastics from biomass. (2018-01-19)

Fine felted nanotubes
Due to their unique properties, carbon nanotubes would be ideal for numerous applications, but to date they cannot be combined adequately with other materials, or they lose their beneficial properties. Scientists from Kiel University and the University of Trento have developed an alternative method of combining, so they retain their characteristic properties. As such, they 'felt' the thread-like tubes into a stable 3-D network. Their research results have been published in Nature Communications. (2017-11-22)

BPA replacements in plastics cause reproductive problems in lab mice
Twenty years ago, researchers made the accidental discovery that BPA had leached out of plastic cages used to house female mice in the lab, causing an increase in chromosomally abnormal eggs. Now, the same team is back to report in the journal Current Biology on Sept. 13 that the array of alternative bisphenols now used to replace BPA in BPA-free bottles, cups, cages, and other items appear to come with similar problems for their mice. (2018-09-13)

Brain damage in fish affected by plastic nanoparticles
A new study from Lund University in Sweden shows that plastic particles in water may end up inside fish brains. The plastic can cause brain damage, which is the likely cause of behavioral disorders observed in the fish. (2017-09-25)

Degrading plastics revealed as source of greenhouse gases
Researchers from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) discovered that several greenhouse gases are emitted as common plastics degrade in the environment. (2018-08-01)

New strategy produces stronger polymers
MIT researchers have found a way to reduce the number of loops in polymer networks such as gels, plastics, and rubber. The findings could offer an easy way for manufacturers to strengthen their materials. (2017-04-24)

Sea anemones are ingesting plastic microfibers
Tiny fragments of plastic in the ocean are consumed by sea anemones along with their food, and bleached anemones retain these microfibers longer than healthy ones, according to new research from Carnegie ecologists. Their work is the first-ever investigation of the interactions between plastic microfibers and sea anemones, which are closely related to corals. (2019-03-28)

Recycled electrical products lead to hazardous chemicals appearing in everyday items
Hazardous chemicals such as bromine, antimony and lead are finding their way into food-contact items and other everyday products because manufacturers are using recycled electrical equipment as a source of black plastic, according to a new study. (2018-05-30)

Wastewater treatment plants are key route into UK rivers for microplastics
Water samples from UK rivers contained significantly higher concentrations of microplastics downstream from wastewater treatment plants, according to one of the first studies to determine potential sources of microplastics pollution. (2018-06-11)

Cheaper and easier way found to make plastic semiconductors
Cheap, flexible and sustainable plastic semiconductors will soon be a reality thanks to a breakthrough by chemists at the University of Waterloo. (2018-04-25)

Reusable ruthenium-based catalyst could be a game-changer for the biomass industry
Researchers at Tokyo Institute of Technology have developed a highly efficient reusable catalyst for the production of primary amines. By cutting the amount of undesired by-products, the catalyst is set to revolutionize the production of bio-based fuels, pharmaceuticals, agricultural chemicals and more. (2017-09-01)

A 'marine motorhome for microbes': Oceanic plastic trash conveys disease to coral reefs
For coral reefs, the threat of climate change and bleaching are bad enough. An international research group led by Cornell University has found that plastic trash -- ubiquitous throughout the world's oceans -- intensifies disease for coral, adding to reef peril, according to a new study in the journal Science. (2018-01-25)

Plastics linked to disease in coral
An international team led by a JCU scientist has found that contact with plastic waste massively increases the chance of disease in corals. (2018-01-25)

Gold-plated crystals set new standard for natural gas detectors
Materials scientists and engineers have developed a sensor that is fast, sensitive and efficient enough to detect specific wavelengths of electromagnetic energy while on the move. The technology could actively scan areas for methane or natural gas leaks, monitor the health of vast fields of crops or quickly sort plastics for recycling. (2017-04-06)

NUS marine scientists find toxic bacteria on microplastics retrieved from tropical waters
A team of marine scientists from the National University of Singapore had uncovered toxic bacteria living on the surfaces of microplastics (which are pieces of plastic smaller than 5 millimetres in size) collected from the coastal areas of Singapore. These bacteria are capable of causing coral bleaching, and triggering wound infections in humans. The team also discovered a diversity of bacteria, including useful organisms - such as those that can degrade marine pollutants like hydrocarbons - in the plastic waste. (2019-02-11)

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