Auteur : Gerald Scott

The utilisation of waste polymers by mechanical recycling and incineration have ecological limitations. Consequently, degradable polymers are gaining acceptance in biological recycling in areas of agricultural technology and packaging where the waste product is located in a microbially active environment. The ecological bene®ts of the synthetic polymers, particularly the polyole®ns, are compared with hydro-biodegradable polymers made from renewable resources with emphasis on energy utilisation, environmental pollution and land utilisation. It is concluded that polymers that degrade by peroxidation followed by bioassimilation of the oxi-dation products (oxo-biodegradable polymers) are in general more environmentally acceptable (`green’) than the the biologically produced hydro-biodegradable polymers.

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