Plastics will remain central to daily life in the future, according to a book by a renowned futurologist commissioned by PlasticsEurope, a Brussels, Belgium-based trade group that represents European resin producers.
The World in 2030, by Ray Hammond, forecasts a ``positive outlook for plastics,'' arguing that the material has an important part to play in overcoming future challenges, including climate change, health care and caring for an aging population.
The intriguing glimpse into the future - including plastic robots and artificial intelligence - has captured some positive press coverage for plastics. Other predictions include plastic blood, plastics that grow on trees, healing plastics, plastic body parts, robot surgeons and floating houses to deal with flooding.
A spokeswoman for PlasticsEurope said: ``The plastics industry can play a critical and responsible role in tackling many of the challenges of the future - especially climate change.
``The report gives us a very good basis to develop steps to ensure plastics continue to play a positive role in delivering quality of life on this planet and to ensure that the enormous potential of plastics as energy- and resource-efficient materials [is used].''
PlasticsEurope used the book launch to announce its Industry Action Plan on tackling climate change. It has asked members to nominate their top young specialists to participate in a series of teams that will identify action the industry can take on climate protection, resource efficiency and consumer protection.
Hammond said: ``One thing is certain: The rapid speed of change that we have seen since the 1980s will not slow down. The rate of change will continue to speed up, so much so that in some ways our lives will be unrecognizable compared to today.''