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Book Review Plastic

Book Review Plastic Planet – The dark side of plastics Planet’ by Gerhard Petting and Werner Boote is without doubt a provocative book that presents a one-sided view and is the subject of a great deal of ‘Plastic controversial discussion. Modern life seems unimaginable without plastics, especially when it comes to lightweight product design, packaging and hygiene. However, the book focuses on the shady side of the world of plastics. And, indeed, those shadows do exist, even though they may only be light grey - or even darkest black, as described in this book. First of all, the reader will be surprised by the chapter entitled ‘Dreams’, a 50 page history of plastics, their technical development and changing reputation over time. The chapter contains several interesting and forgotten insights. Who still remembers the first and often bio-based plastics such as Bakelite, Shellac, Laccain, Celluloid or Rayon? The chapter entitled ‘Nightmares’ deals with the shady side of the world of plastics, which can be summarised briefly as: • The massive ingress of petro-chemical plastics into the seas, which decompose into tiny parts of plastic and, thus, become part of the food chain instead of plankton. • PVC – even though health problems stemming from the production process have been solved to a large degree nowadays, problems still exist in cases of fire (dioxins) and the heavy use of plasticizers. • Plasticizers with a hormonal effect, like the phthalates group, which are used in several types of plastics, and mainly in PVC. • Bisphenol A, whose use in sensitive applications such as babies’ bottles is now being increasingly restricted. All this is not new, but the agglomerated impact and a presentation of the potential results on the environment and on health certainly encourage reflection. And this reflection leads to the question of why the plastics industry does not work more intensively to eliminate these shadowy aspects, the more so as there exist comprehensive and commercially available industrial solutions. PVC and Bisphenol A can be replaced by other plastics in critical applications. And also for phthalates there exist commercially available green plasticizers without hormonal effects. Strategies to avoid waste could help to reduce ingress into the seas. Bio-based plasticizers could be tailored in regard to their biodegradability in the seas. In many cases bio-based solutions are available to brighten up a lot of these shadowy areas. Why do parts of the plastic industry stick to these old solutions? The reaction to this question should not be excuses, or ‘white-washing’, but an innovative boost in the plastics industry to increase the benefits for consumers as well as for the European industry! by Michael Carus nova-Institut Hürth, Germany In this regard the book disappoints in its last chapter ‘Awakening’, which addresses the consumer rather than the industry. Innovative solutions are barely presented. Instead, a description is outlined of a family that tries to live without plastics. Certainly, this is an interesting concept, but it is no comprehensive solution-focused approach for the future – one that will belong to, and be developed by, green chemicals and the plastics industry. 8 bioplastics MAGAZINE [03/11] Vol. 6

Order now! A new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc. Degradable Plastics Book-Review Bookstore The degradable plastic industry has been on the verge of commercial success for decades. However, demand growth was limited because most degradable plastics were too expensive, were unavailable in large enough quantities or had performance drawbacks that limited them to niche markets. This situation began to change in the early 2000s, as interest in environmentally friendly products gained strength, boosted by the efforts of major users like Wal-Mart. At the same time, the availability of biodegradable plastics increased significantly due to expansions by key producers. These and other trends are presented in Degradable Plastics, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm. The full report (202 pages, published 08/2010) is available through the bioplastics MAGAZINE bookstore at Order now for US-$ 4,800 (+ VAT where applicable) order at, by phone +49 2161 664864 or by e-mail “Thank you Jan. It is obvious that you went to great lengths on this work. You have listed biopolymers I haven‘t even heard of. This report will be very helpful to all involved in the biopolymer world.“ A reader‘s remark Hans-Josef Endres, Andrea Siebert-Raths Engineering Biopolymers Markets, Manufacturing, Properties and Applications 660 pages, hard cover. 278 coloured pictures, 70 tables Prepub-Discount ! (see * below) Author: Jan Th. J. Ravenstijn, MSc The state of the art on Bioplastics, January 2010 The report ‘The state-of-the-art on Bioplastics 2010‘ describes the revolutionary growth of bio-based monomers, polymers, and plastics and changes in performance and variety for the entire global plastics market in the first decades of this century. Trends, issues, technologies, products, markets, manufacturers, investment plans, performances, needs, expectations, and new opportunities are reviewed and discussed. This includes the assimilation of the agricultural industry with the polymer industry to a new value chain. Today, bio-based thermosets are larger than bio-based thermoplastics, while also the volume of bio-based durable materials exceeds the volume of bio-based biodegradable plastics. Order now for EUR 3,750.00 (+ VAT where applicable) order at, by phone +49 2161 664864 or by e-mail (Special prices for research and non-profit organisations upon request). Hans-Josef Endres, Andrea Siebert-Raths Technische Biopolymere Rahmenbedingungen, Marktsituation, Herstellung, Aufbau und Eigenschaften 628 Seiten, Hardcover This book is unique in its focus on market-relevant bio/renewable materials. It is based on comprehensive research projects, during which these materials were systematically analyzed and characterized. For the first time the interested reader will find comparable data not only for biogenic polymers and biological macromolecules such as proteins, but also for engineering materials. The reader will also find valuable information regarding microstructure, manufacturing, and processing-, application-, and recycling properties of biopolymers Rainer Höfer (Editor) Sustainable Solutions for Modern Economies ISBN: 978-1-84755-905-0 Copyright: 2009 / Format: Hardcover / 497 pages Order now for just EUR 99.00 plus shipping & handling (please ask for shipping cost into your country) order at, by phone +49 2161 664864 or by e-mail Order now for EUR 249.00* publ. date Aug. 04, 2011 Bestellen Sie das deutschsprachige Buch für EUR 299,00. *buy the new english version from us for € 249.00 for a limited time, instead of EUR 299.00 order at by phone +49 2161 664864 or by e-mail

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