There are many human inventions that were created to give benefits to the human race but soon turned out to be detrimental forces. Plastic can certainly be considered one such invention. According to Bloomberg, all the fishes in the ocean will be outweighed by plastic by the year 2050. Unfortunately, only a small proportion of the plastic waste generated is recyclable and out of that recyclable proportion, an even smaller percentage is actually recycled. Also, plastic is one material that is more expensive to recycle than to produce from scratch, giving a greater push to the plastic industry. In spite of this huge threat, it is still not deterring us from putting a stop to plastic use.
Several scientists and researchers are trying to find a way out of our plastic problems. Most recently, scientists at Purdue University have come up with a solution to convert plastic waste into 100% clean fuel.
Researchers from Purdue University have developed a technique to upcycle polypropylene, the plastic used in making wafer packets and toys, into vehicle fuel. This is done by making use of supercritical water, which is the state of water when it functions both as liquid and gas under very high pressure and temperature. This superheated water is added to polypropylene to convert the plastic into oil in a few hours.
Statistics say that the Earth is being choked by over five billion tons of plastic waste. Out of this five billion ton, 23% is comprised of polypropylene. This innovation can put an end to at least a part of our plastic problems. However, until and unless the technique is replicated on a bigger scale and adopted across the world, success will be far-fetched. So, efforts must be made by people, communities, businesses, and governments to root for such initiatives so that we move towards a healthier and more positive future.
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