Plastic

This short communication describes the climate change impacts of using cellulose, and more precisely cellulosic fiber-based materials, in food packaging, representing current and emerging industrial state of the art technology, without specific reference to current scientific advances. First, the different types of cellulosic fiber-based packaging materials, which can be used to replace fossil-based packaging materials, are presented for flexible and rigid applications. The focus is on technological solutions with packaging properties that enable the protection of commonly sold food products.
Graphical abstract of article
Microplastics (MPs) and nanoplastics (NPs) have attracted considerable attention in the recent years as potential threats to the ecosystem and public health. This review summarizes current knowledge of pathological events triggered by micro- and nano-plastics (MP/NPs) with focus on oxidative damages at different levels of biological complexity (molecular, cellular, tissue, organ, individual and population).
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 114, May 2019
The presence of small plastic particles in the environment, reported for the first time in the 1970's, has only recently been recognized as a global issue. Although environmental awareness continues to grow, so does its consumption and associated risks. The number of studies reporting the presence of microplastics, has grown exponentially as did the concern over plastic degradation into smaller particles like nanoplastics, a potentially more pernicious form of plastic pollution.
PET is a ubiquitous material because of its robust properties. Today, less than 30% of PET bottles and few carpets are recycled in the United States, leading to the majority of PET being landfilled. The low PET reclamation rate is due to the fact that PET bottle recycling today is mechanical, resulting in a devalued product. Here, reclaimed PET (rPET) bottles are converted to fiberglass-reinforced plastics (FRPs), which sell for more than twice that of rPET. When monomers derivable from biomass are incorporated, rPET-FRPs with superior properties are achieved.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 113, April 2019
Although the study of the effects of microplastics increased in the last years, terrestrial ecosystems remain less studied. In fact, the effects of microplastics in insects, the most abundant group of animals and major providers of key Ecosystem Services, are not well known despite the potential cascading negative effects on the ecosystems functioning in the habitats where they occur.
Microplastics are emerging pollutants in aquatic and terrestrial environments. In the last years, several case studies and reviews have been published about microplastics in freshwater and marine environments. However, no standardized methods are available for sampling and sample preparation. Based on literature research, this review presents different techniques and methods for sampling as well as the preparation of microplastic samples from water, sediment and biota of freshwater and marine environments.
Tire materials are a significant proportion of the (micro)plastics in the environment that until today have been clearly overlooked. These materials are released into the environment, either unintentionally as an abrasion product from tire wear, that reaches the environment via road runoff, or intentionally as, for example, shredded “tire crumble rubber” used as filling material for playgrounds.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 112, March 2019
Plastics are an integral but largely inconspicuous part of human daily routines. Associated with a high production and single use nature of several products, small plastic particles became ubiquitous. Due to processes like water currents and winds, plastics may occur far from their place of origin and affect biota at different environmental compartments. In the environment plastics can degrade into increasingly smaller particles, reaching a nanometer size which increases their potential to be incorporated by organisms.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 112, March 2019
Nanoplastic is an emerging topic of relevance in environmental science. The analytical methods for microplastic have a particle size limit of a few micrometers so that new methods have to be developed to cover the nanometer range. This contribution reviews the progress in environmental nanoplastic analysis and critically evaluates which techniques from nanomaterial analysis may potentially be adapted to close the methodological gap. A roadmap is brought forward for the whole analytical process from sample treatment to particle characterization.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 112, March 2019
Plastics are a frequently observed component of marine debris and there is growing concern about microplastic (MP) ecotoxicity, and the impacts of additives, sorbed hazardous organic contaminants, heavy metals, and biofilm on MP surfaces. The relative importance of MP from different terrestrial and freshwater sources is poorly understood and limits our ability to develop best management practices. This review focuses on evidence and methods for source apportionment of MP in freshwater environments including the use of MP characteristics, mass balance techniques, and surface characteristics.

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