Author: Sied Kooistra, creative director – founder PyraSied Xtreme Acrylic
My impression is that opinion-forming on plastic takes on indiscriminate forms. I find that not only undesirable or unnecessary but especially unwise.
A month without plastics
A thought experiment. A month without plastics! That will be an unprecedented bad ending adventure. The majority of the interior and exterior of the car is missing, all kinds of parts are missing from the bike, trucks are stationary, trains without interior, planes on the ground, no cell phones, no laptops, no screens, no cutting boards, no coffee maker or mixer, all shampoo has entered the bath, the dressing table is dripping, half of all textiles have disappeared, the lamps no longer work. All connections are broken, transport impossible, dark and cold. Oh yes, people died because plastics were used in their bodies, stents, artificial bones. My teeth also have a problem and where are my glasses and the hearing aid is not working. And my wife is suddenly pregnant, which IUD? And I am not even talking about missing packaging materials. And there seems to be the bottleneck in postponement in terms of environmental issues – apart from the human being of course, but we cannot eliminate it and find it difficult to recycle.
Difference between one-time-use and performance plastics
There is indeed a problem with plastics, but a lot is already being done about it. However, this does not yet remedy the legacy of the past – because the plastic soup, in particular, has its cause. Let’s make a distinction between single-use plastics and performance/quality plastics. So on the one hand packaging material, plastic bags and all applications where materials that in themselves last a long time are used for a short time. We must be very critical there, when do we use this kind of plastics and when not. On the other hand, the performance/quality plastics, these are indispensable. Great, but there too sharp attention is needed for smart reuse, something that must already be provided in the design. In general, this is indeed properly taken into account. The performance/quality plastics make a very useful contribution to sustainability, CO2 reduction, prevention of wear and tear, solving of health problems, efficient transport, smart production (3D printing, injection molding) and life extension of all kinds of products, houses, machines, and people.
So considering the nuance of plastics as bad is too short a bend and leads to more problems than it solves. The recurring news item of the plastic soup is being tackled very thoroughly, certainly in our part of the world. Simply by not throwing packaging material into the environment, it will not get into the sea either. The problems of the microparticles due to the washing of textiles or additions in other products can be remedied and they are busy. However, we should not torture ourselves by reducing plastics in general. This is also not necessary in aesthetic or technical applications.
Forming an opinion
Technologically, plastics are very precisely tailored to the application. If you want to form a correct opinion about plastics, you must include the plastic, the application and the behaviour of the person who uses it. Consider the use of raw materials, the usefulness of use, the risks of abuse by users and the ease of reuse.
I love acrylic!
Our beautiful acrylic, the king of plastics, is an absolute quality plastic and will last a long time. Acrylic remains beautiful for decades and can be reused without any problems. It would be a shame to throw away this child with the bath water with plastic bags due to a generally negative attitude towards plastics. Do not! Think! It is not difficult … Oh yes, acrylic does not float and does not dissolve. No toxic things are released. So if you throw it in the sea, the fish will have something nice for a long time to come.
Founder of PyraSied and so fond of acrylic!
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