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108 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 2073428 14-Aug-2018 17:42
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Just to be clear, degradable plastic does not produce micro-plastic.  It contains ingredients that breaks down the long-chain plastic molecules into short-chain molecules that microbes can digest as food.  Micro-plastics are small beads of plastic used in cosmetics.


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  Reply # 2073459 14-Aug-2018 18:33
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debo:

 

Just to be clear, degradable plastic does not produce micro-plastic.  It contains ingredients that breaks down the long-chain plastic molecules into short-chain molecules that microbes can digest as food.  Micro-plastics are small beads of plastic used in cosmetics.

 

 

I think degradable means they just break down into smaller pieces. Its still an oil product

 

Biodegradable still takes 3 to 6 months. They are made from raw organic materials or petrochemicals with bio additives

 

On reflection

 

Shopping. One of The Mikes took containers in his boot, a Pajero so must be @MikeAqua. Out groceries into them. Some stacka type containers would be handy

 

Kitchen bins. Too bad. Line with some paper and be careful with damp. Empty and clean. 

 

 

 

I feel all plastics need to be assessed. Not bags, everything. As long as its not a never-ending assessment. Much of the information needed exists.

 

Re invent recycling so most does in fact get recycled.

 

 


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  Reply # 2073485 14-Aug-2018 19:41
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debo:

 

Just to be clear, degradable plastic does not produce micro-plastic.  It contains ingredients that breaks down the long-chain plastic molecules into short-chain molecules that microbes can digest as food.  Micro-plastics are small beads of plastic used in cosmetics.

 

 

They are/were "microbeads".  They may be one form of "micro-plastic", but mechanically broken down plastic from larger items, tyre dust, clothing fibers etc etc. is the bulk of it.

 

Some info here.


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  Reply # 2073675 15-Aug-2018 08:09
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debo:

 

Just to be clear, degradable plastic does not produce micro-plastic.  It contains ingredients that breaks down the long-chain plastic molecules into short-chain molecules that microbes can digest as food.  Micro-plastics are small beads of plastic used in cosmetics.

 

 

A number of non-biodegradable plastics produce micro-plastic particles as they progressively break down into smaller and smaller pieces.  If you go to a seriously polluted part of the world and dissect a filter feeding animal, you will see tiny particles of plastic in its filtration structures - for example in the gills of oysters or mussels.

 

The effects of this are unclear, but may be harmful.  For example, many plastics are suspected to interfere with hormonal systems in animals, by releasing hormone mimicking compounds. 





Mike

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  Reply # 2073795 15-Aug-2018 10:39
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MikeAqua:

 

The comparisons I have seen for plastic bags vs alternate products don't consider impacts after shopping.  They aren't full life-cycle assessments. 

 

 

This indicates to me you haven't even read the MoE consultation paper, as it specifically compares against three seperate reuse scenarios ranging from most to least likely. In all cases, the plastic bags come out as "least bad".


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  Reply # 2074079 15-Aug-2018 17:23
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Quite a good bit of analysis here

 

I have always liked the way Eric Crampton analyses things. Here he presents Danish data, that looks at environmental impacts across 14 key areas, and calculates the number of times that a reusable bag would have to be used to hale less environmental impact than a "single use" plastic bag. It comes out as 7,100 times for a cotton bag, and an astonishing 20,000 times for an organic cotton bag. Or, more realistically for many, 43 times for a paper bag and 52 times for a non-woven PP bag.

 

Personally, even ignoring the fact that I re-use "single use" bags as lunch carriers and bin liners etc, I doubt I will on average re-use a paper bag 43 times or a plastic reusable bag 52 times.

 

So overall, aside from the inconvenience, it looks like banning the bags will clearly be bad for the environment as well.


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  Reply # 2074082 15-Aug-2018 17:35
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JimmyH:

 

Quite a good bit of analysis here

 

I have always liked the way Eric Crampton analyses things. Here he presents Danish data, that looks at environmental impacts across 14 key areas, and calculates the number of times that a reusable bag would have to be used to hale less environmental impact than a "single use" plastic bag. It comes out as 7,100 times for a cotton bag, and an astonishing 20,000 times for an organic cotton bag. Or, more realistically for many, 43 times for a paper bag and 52 times for a non-woven PP bag.

 

Personally, even ignoring the fact that I re-use "single use" bags as lunch carriers and bin liners etc, I doubt I will on average re-use a paper bag 43 times or a plastic reusable bag 52 times.

 

So overall, aside from the inconvenience, it looks like banning the bags will clearly be bad for the environment as well.

 

 

Which is why I always tend to abhor bans. They're too one sized. Education and in this case, a bit of guilting always works better.


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  Reply # 2074126 15-Aug-2018 18:15
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The problem with bans like this, is it opens the door to other bans, or worse, regulation and compliance in this area. People tend to have short memories, but before Labour got voted out last time, they tried to ban incandescent bulbs. That was when everything was becoming very nanny state, and people were getting sick of it. That ban never happened, but it is probably more palatable today, because we now have LED, and their are LED replacements for most incandescent, which wasn't previously the case when the ban was to occur. NZ is quite far behind now on this, as other countries have now banned them, but that is a problem with the way the system works in NZ


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  Reply # 2074129 15-Aug-2018 18:19
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kryptonjohn:

 

Which is why I always tend to abhor bans. They're too one sized. Education and in this case, a bit of guilting always works better.

 

 

Indeed. However, they also give politicians a quick soundbite that makes it look like they are doing something worthy, irrespective of whether the ban will be effective, is commensurate with the hard it seeks to avert, or will actually make the problem worse.

 

Back on the subject of bags, I wonder whether anyone has looked at the hygiene issues associated with reusable bags. Personally, I don't fance reusing one 20-30 times, after having meat juices leak into them. I also don't fancy having the checkout operator handle the manky old unwashed and contaminated reusable bag of the people in front of me (crusty from the congealed chicken juices of last weeks shop and loaded with salmonella and listeria), and then handling my food. particularly if it's unwrapped items like fruit and veg.

 

 


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  Reply # 2074132 15-Aug-2018 18:23
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mattwnz:

 

The problem with bans like this, is it opens the door to other bans, or worse, regulation and compliance in this area. People tend to have short memories, but before Labour got voted out last time, they tried to ban incandescent bulbs. That was when everything was becoming very nanny state, and people were getting sick of it. That ban never happened, but it is probably more palatable today, because we now have LED, and their are LED replacements for most incandescent, which wasn't previously the case when the ban was to occur. NZ is quite far behind now on this, as other countries have now banned them, but that is a problem with the way the system works in NZ

 

 

Agree. Too much focus on politics too little focus on getting the job done.


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  Reply # 2074134 15-Aug-2018 18:25
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JimmyH:

 

kryptonjohn:

 

Which is why I always tend to abhor bans. They're too one sized. Education and in this case, a bit of guilting always works better.

 

 

Indeed. However, they also give politicians a quick soundbite that makes it look like they are doing something worthy, irrespective of whether the ban will be effective, is commensurate with the hard it seeks to avert, or will actually make the problem worse.

 

Back on the subject of bags, I wonder whether anyone has looked at the hygiene issues associated with reusable bags. Personally, I don't fance reusing one 20-30 times, after having meat juices leak into them. I also don't fancy having the checkout operator handle the manky old unwashed and contaminated reusable bag of the people in front of me (crusty from the congealed chicken juices of last weeks shop and loaded with salmonella and listeria), and then handling my food. particularly if it's unwrapped items like fruit and veg.

 

 

 

 

When we talk about re use, its really 2 uses. Carrying my groceries home, and bin lining = 2 uses. Thats it, 2 uses. 


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  Reply # 2074137 15-Aug-2018 18:28
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That's a 50% reduction on single use. Imagine reducing all waste by 50%!

 

Plus those bin liners end up in a land fill, not in the ocean.

 

 


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  Reply # 2074141 15-Aug-2018 18:32
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kryptonjohn:

 

That's a 50% reduction on single use. Imagine reducing all waste by 50%!

 

Plus those bin liners end up in a land fill, not in the ocean.

 

 

 

 

Is landfill good?


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  Reply # 2074144 15-Aug-2018 18:37
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Landfill isn't fantastic but it's one hell of a lot better than oceanfill. If it is done properly it is... ok.

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 2074146 15-Aug-2018 18:40
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JimmyH:

 

kryptonjohn:

 

Which is why I always tend to abhor bans. They're too one sized. Education and in this case, a bit of guilting always works better.

 

 

Indeed. However, they also give politicians a quick soundbite that makes it look like they are doing something worthy, irrespective of whether the ban will be effective, is commensurate with the hard it seeks to avert, or will actually make the problem worse.

 

Back on the subject of bags, I wonder whether anyone has looked at the hygiene issues associated with reusable bags. Personally, I don't fance reusing one 20-30 times, after having meat juices leak into them. I also don't fancy having the checkout operator handle the manky old unwashed and contaminated reusable bag of the people in front of me (crusty from the congealed chicken juices of last weeks shop and loaded with salmonella and listeria), and then handling my food. particularly if it's unwrapped items like fruit and veg.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pretty sure this has been researched before, but not sure how much of an issue it is. Some people buy  plastic bag liners for them... Fruit and veges areas though usually provide plastic bags to put fruit and veges in. 

 

I remember though when super markets used to provide second use boxes instead of plastic bags. Some like Moore Wilsons still do, but Pacnsave don't seem to provide them much anymore, or very few.


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