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What if we stopped using plastics? It would be an environmental nightmare

By: Don Loepp

May 23, 2014

ABC News Now did a short but fantastic report on plastics and the environment that Plastics Blog readers should watch.

Dan Kloeffler hosts the report, "What If We Stopped Using Plastic?"

Interviewees include some familiar names: Susan Freinkel, author of "Plastic: A Toxic Love Story"; Mike Biddle, founder of recycler MBA Polymers Inc. and president of Waste Free Oceans Americas; and Anthony Andrady, adjunct professor of chemical and biomolecule engineering at North Carolina State University.

Biddle is especially convincing in his explanation of what removing plastics would mean to the economy, and the environment.

“If we stop using plastics all together and replace them with alternative materials we'd pay a higher price in energy usage, in water usage and in CO2 generation in many, many different products,” Biddle said.

Andrady added: “We can certainly go back to a lifestyle where there are no plastics, but it would be a much more difficult and much more expensive lifestyle to live.”

Of course we should remember that sometimes the alternative isn't another material — it's nothing at all.