June 8, 2009

Pollution due to Plastic

Plastic is the general common term for a wide range of synthetic or semi synthetic organic amorphous solid materials suitable for the manufacture of industrial products. Plastics are typically polymers of high molecular weight, and may contain other substances to improve performance and/or reduce costs.

plastics are composed of polymers of carbon and hydrogen alone or with oxygen, nitrogen, chlorine or sulfur in the backbone.

Due to their insolubility in water and relative chemical inertness, pure plastics generally have low toxicity in their finished state, and will pass through the digestive system with no ill effect. However, plastics often contain a variety of toxic additives. For example, plasticizers like adipates and phthalates are often added to brittle plastics like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) to make them pliable enough for use in food packaging, children's toys and teethers, tubing, shower curtains and other items.

Plastics are durable and degrade very slowly; the molecular bonds that make plastic so durable make it equally resistant to natural processes of degradation. 
In some cases, burning plastic can release toxic fumes. Also, the manufacturing of plastics often creates large quantities of chemical pollutants.Plastic pollution in seas is a global threat that damages marine ecosystems, harms and kills millions of marine animals, and poses affect in human health. In 1992 the EPA found that a majority of beaches around the world had some accumulation of plastic material.According to the 2001 Marine Pollution Bulletin, there was six pounds of plastic floating in the North Pacific subtropical gyre for every pound of naturally occurring zooplankton. These results were re-confirmed in 2002. Plastic break down to small size that some marine organisms takes it as food, these toxins can be released into their living membranes. So poisons and debris may make a full circle.

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