We live in the Plastic Age.
After stone, bronze and iron were the materials with the biggest impact on human life, now the synthetic poly- mers, that started to really spread only 50 years ago, have taken over control.
Looking into their history, one finds that its inventors were actually looking for cheaper ways to substitute precious materials like ivory. Hence the main character- istics its inventors where looking for, were solidity and durability.
Knowing this, todays main use of plastics seems almost
ironic: Most (35%) are being used for packaging. Fol- lowed by the construction (22%) and transportation (12%) sector. Even fashion, that is defined by fast changes is heavily relying on the material.
In addition to that, the recy- cling of plastic has never really worked, since sorting the different kinds of plastic seems almost impossible. Therefore less than 10% of all plastic products used today are being recycled.
And so a material, that was made to last, started to spread as waste from land- fills into the environment, our oceans and our animals.
RESEARCH NOTES ON STYROFOAM: