The 5 Gyres Institute has published a report called “The Plastics BAN List.” Its purpose is to assess which plastics are most damaging to human health and the environment. Plastic waste was collected and analyzed to see in which form it’s most commonly found, which toxic chemicals are used to create the plastics, and what recovery systems (i.e. recycling, composting, reuse) exist, if any.
The list includes “Better Alternatives Now” (that’s where the BAN acronym comes in) – ways in which consumers, industry, and government can take voluntary action without waiting for technological fixes.
Voluntary action is key because, as the BAN list explains in its Findings and Recommendations, nearly all of these products have no economic value in today’s recycling systems. This may come as a shock to those people who think recycling is a viable green solution:
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