Bioplastic: What is it and what are its advantages?
The serious environmental pollution caused by single-use plastic has led the quest for an alternative, more sustainable material to stem traditional oil-based plastic use and production.
What is Bioplastic?
Among the possible alternatives there is bioplastic, an environmentally friendly material made with renewable raw materials such as algae, sugar cane, wheat, corn starch, vegetable oils, potatoes, and tapioca. Bioplastics will allow us to give up oil, the essential basis of the familiar disposable single-use water bottles.
The environmental benefits of bioplastic includes:
- Reduction of the waste of water and oil used to produce plastic
- Reduction of CO2 emissions caused by production and transport
- Decrease in plastic waste and pollution
The key advantage is that bioplastic is completely biodegradable and compostable. Unlike common plastic - which takes over 500 years to completely degrade - bioplastic dissolves in the environment in 4 or 5 years. There are different types of bioplastics derived from biomass, including BioPET, BioPE, BioPA from sugar cane, molasses and vegetable oils; PLA from corn starch, beet, tapioca, and PHA, always derived from biomass (corn starch, sugar cane and beet).
Other alternative materials
Lots of new biodegradable materials are popping up all over the market in a quest to replace household items typically made from plastic. Among alternative materials are bamboo, hemp, linen, coconut and even pineapple fibre. We are excited to see what the market comes up with, so that we can ditch single-use plastics all-together!
Where to start?
It is good to walk towards more sustainable lifestyle choices, starting with consumption. Whatever your preference, you can start fighting plastic pollution anytime — at home, at work or wherever you are. We think the first item to equip yourself with is definitely a trendy and long-lasting water bottle! A particular product we love is the Root7 OneBottle® which keeps drinks cold for 30 hours & hot for 20 hours, comes with a lifetime guarantee, and what is more, a tree is planted for each bottle sold. Another item we also recommend and use it in our offices is Bumboo Luxury Toilet Tissue made from 100% bamboo, a rapidly renewable and sustainable alternative to trees. It’s extra soft too — we love it!