Concerns over what he considers a growing amount of plastics misinformation have led plastics veteran Chris DeArmitt to write a book: "The Plastics Paradox: Facts for a Brighter Future."
The book will be available next month on Amazon. The self-published book will be available in hardcover and as an electronic version.
DeArmitt holds a Ph.D. in polymers and surface science and has more than 20 years of industry experience, including stints with BASF, Electrolux Frigidaire and Hybrid Plastics. He's operated Phantom Plastics, his own Cincinnati-based consulting firm, since 2009, including work with such clients as HP Inc. and Procter & Gamble Co.
On TV, DeArmitt has commented on plastics-related topics on 60 Minutes, as well as on the Sky News network and BBC in the United Kingdom. In an email, he listed five of the book's key points. In each point, DeArmitt said that the public is told that:
• Plastics take 1,000 years to degrade, while he says experiments show a plastic grocery bag degrades in less than one year outdoors.
• Plastics create a waste problem, while he says plastics account for 13 percent of waste and help to dramatically reduce waste production.
• Straws and bags are important, while he says they hardly register in the waste data.
• Plastics cause litter, but he says studies prove that people cause litter.
• Plastics are bad for the environment, while he says that life cycle analysis studies prove that plastics are usually the greenest material solution.
DeArmitt's colorful writing style is evident in the book, which includes chapters labeled "The Meaning of Green" and "Corruption, Distraction and Greed." In the book's preface, DeArmitt cites his reasons for writing it, including finding out that his children were being taught inaccurate information about plastics at school.
DeArmitt also shares an anecdote of sitting next to a young person on a plane.
"She took a nap and I glanced at her laptop computer, which had a sticker on it which said, 'Rise above plastics,'" he writes. "I had to smile because of her naivety. Why? Well, the sticker was made of plastic and so was the adhesive that held it on her laptop, which was also made of plastic.
"Her backpack was made of nylon plastic and so were her shoes. … She had no idea that her life would not be possible without the very plastics she claimed to object to."
DeArmitt said "The Plastics Paradox" is based on more than 400 scientific articles and reports, which he made available online at plasticsparadox.com. He plans to add to the list as new articles are published.