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Biodegradable plastics & marine litter

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Biodegradable plastics & marine litter

misconceptions, concerns and impacts on marine environments


Paperback / softback

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Biodegradable plastics & marine litter by United Nations Environment Programme
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This report concludes that "the adoption of plastic products labelled as 'biodegradable' will not bring about a significant decrease either in the quantity of plastic entering the ocean or the risk of physical and chemical impacts on the marine environment". Indeed, biodegradable polymers degrade significantly slower in the marine environment than on land. Therefore, a widespread use is said to lead to continuing littering problems and its negative impacts. Furthermore, oxo-degradable polymers would only increase the quantity of microplastics in the environment and claims stating otherwise are likely motivated by commercial interests rather than scientific evidence.

Author Biography

United Nations Publications is the official publisher for the UN and it produces over 400 titles each year. The range of subjects covered are as varied as the issues being tackled by the UN as it works for a better world for all. Since the first printing of the UN Charter, this publishing unit has been providing valued information to those in government, academia and business
Release date NZ
June 30th, 2017
Country of Publication
col. ill., col. figs, tables
United Nations Environment Programme
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