harmful effects of styrofoam on the environment

A company named Ecovative Design has created a line of products made from fungi and agricultural waste that are Styrofoam-like and aspire to be a more environmentally friendly replacement. While it can be recycled, the recycling market is diminishing. Styrofoam TM not only poses a threat to human health, but can also be harmful to the environment. However, its harmful effects outweigh its HFCs are less detrimental to the ozone than chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), which were used in the manufacturing of Styrofoam in the past, but it is thought that the impact of HFCs on climate change is much more serious. The National Bureau of Standards Center for Fire Research has found 57 chemical byproducts released during the creation of Styrofoam. Styrene, for example, is the foundational ingredient used to make polystyrene. Another cause for concern are the brominated flame retardants that are used on Styrofoam products. The adverse health effects of styrene intensify when we heat or burn Styrofoam. } Banning Styrofoam is easy as replacing canvas bags with plastic ones. Compostable containers are made, using corn starch, palm fiber, peat fiber and wheat stocks; and they’re able to break down into soil-enriching compost. This not only pollutes the air, but also results in liquid and solid toxic waste that requires proper disposal. Compostable food service packaging is very trendy right now as an “ecologically correct” option. } the only way you can get rid of polystyrene foam is to incinerate it, which costs money and energy. This not only pollutes the air, but also produces loads of liquid and solid waste that need disposal. HFCs are less detrimental to the ozone than CFCs, which they replaced in the manufacturing of Styrofoam, but it is thought that the impact of HFCs on global warming is much more serious. Those who work in styrene product manufacturing and are regularly exposed to high levels of styrene have experienced acute health effects, including the following: Chronic exposure to styrene leads to further complications, including effects on the nervous system. Symptoms of chronic exposure include those listed below: Styrofoam containers are commonly used for take-out food, but chemicals can leach into it and contaminate that food, affecting human health and reproductive systems. The manufacturing process also releases into the air hydrocarbons, which sink to ground level and mix with atmospheric nitrogen oxides to produce tropospheric ozone, a major … It is now considered the main component of marine debris. It’s popular because of its light weight, good insulation properties, and advantage as a packing material for shipping without adding weight. Because the material is not biodegradable, the risk of animals choking on the disposed Styrofoam increases. Styrene is the foundational ingredient used to make polystyrene. All Rights Reserved. Although many people have heard Styrofoam does detrimental things to the planet, very few people actually understand how Styrofoam harms the environment. An Adricom Inc. company, International Agency for Research on Cancer, National Bureau of Standards Center for Fire Research, products made from fungi and agricultural waste, Why Styrofoam Is So Bad for the Environment, Deep Ocean Live: Tonnes of plastic and thousands of flip-flops threaten wildlife on coral atoll, Chile becomes first Latin America country to ban commercial use of plastic bags, Irritation of the upper respiratory tract. Updated March 27, 2020. Learning about the impact Styrofoam has on the planet will help you find ways to help minimize the damage caused by this material. However, effects on non-human animals are unanimously harmful, and people who live and work in environments with high concentrations of styrene have higher instances of cancer, neurological issues, headaches, depression, fatigue, and more. Harmful Effects on the Environment. The properties that make polystyrene foam a good insulator—its 95 percent air content by volume and its stability to breakdown—also account for its problems for the environment. These impacts are of considerable concern, as, according to the Environmental Production Agency, Styrofoam is the fifth largest source of hazardous waste in the United States PRODUCTION Styrofoam is composed of Benzene and Styrene, both of which are known human carcinogens.1 90,000 workers are estimated to … If you have ever observed this, you will realise that items made of polystyrene take too long to return to Earth. listeners: [], Photo: Andrew Moreton, Flickr Creative Commons. According to the EPA, Americans trash approximately 25 billion Styrofoam cups and take-out containers every year. 1) It is non-biodegradable. It is broadly used in the manufacture of plastics, resins and rubber. Unfortunately, for all of Styrofoam’s good points, data has shown that Styrofoam also has harmful effects. This legislative session, Maryland state Sen. Cheryl Kagan and Del. The photosynthesis in plants is a very important chemical change that is beneficial to living organisms. It is considered a main component of marine debris. Plastic pollution has a big impact on the environment, but plastic waste isn’t unavoidable. According to a recent study, materials made of Styrofoam do not break down when exposed to photons. But the environmental effects of plastics can't be left out of the conversation. This, combined with the fact that Styrofoam floats, means that large amounts of polystyrene have accumulated along coastlines and waterways around the world. The plastic waste epidemic is causing major problems around the world, on land and at sea. When used with food products, especially when heated, Styrofoam releases toxic chemicals into the food causing a contamination which can be hazardous to your health In addition, when exposed to sunlight,Styrofoam creates harmful air pollutants which contaminate landfills and deplete the ozone layer. Scientists have hope for developing a suitable replacement for Styrofoam. Styrofoam has become such an accepted everyday product that people often don’t understand how Styrofoam harms the environment. Another cause for concern are the brominated flame retardants that are used on Styrofoam products. Global One-Stop Solution for Excess Lab and IT Asset Decommissioning, Data Destruction and Asset Remarketing. What is Styrofoam? This is accentuated if people reheat the food … But the styrene monomer from which it is made is suspected of causing cancer and other health problems, and miniscule amounts of styrene could leach into your hot coffee. Styrofoam is actually the trade name for polystyrene. Styrofoam also adds the bromine retardants which have been found harmful for health and environment. Making it sends dangerous gasses into the atmosphere. 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Although it is recyclable, most polystyrene foam ends up in landfills because it is expensive to transport a product that is virtually air to recycling plants. Toxic chemicals. 1. While there are some positive aspects of the material, the years have shown that Styrofoam also has harmful effects. (function() { Styrofoam was created in the 1970's by Dow Those that are recycled are remanufactured into things like cafeteria trays or packing filler. Polystyrene is said to be harmful for our environment. Polystyrene is a petroleum-based plastic. 2. Styrofoam is manufactured by using HFCs, or hydrofluorocarbons, which have negative impacts on the ozone layer and global warming. But all this plastic waste is very harmful: listed here are the five ways that plastics harm the environment, birds and wildlife -- and even people. Styrofoam can be recycled, but the market for recycled Styrofoam is diminishing. There have been huge debates over Styrofoam poison about its effects and ill effects on human beings and pets. Those that are recycled can be remanufactured into things like cafeteria trays or packing filler. Styrofoam is one of the most environmentally unfriendly types of waste that exist today … Several years ago, coffee retailer Tully’s began serving its popular beverages in compostable cups. Many recycling companies no longer will accept polystyrene products. Environmental health concerns start with the elements used to make Styrofoam. Polystyrene foam production generates mountains of liquid and solid waste. You Drink Coffee In Styrofoam Cups?. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer have established styrene as a possible human carcinogen. American Biopack is a leading manufacturer of high quality disposable food packaging and industrial packaging products, such as sugarcane tableware and electromics packagings etc. Polystyrene is the generic name for Styrofoam. Another reason that Styrofoam is harmful for the environment is that it is made with petroleum, which is a non-sustainable resource. Already, a number of independent restaurants and food service brands worldwide, such as Dunkin’ Donuts, have shown how compostable containers can be used as a practical alternative. Thankfully, there is a simple way to tell whether a plastic is recyclable or not, and also if it's safe to be reused or should be avoided altogether. ); International Agency for Research on Cancer, The National Bureau of Standards Center for Fire Research, http://greenliving.lovetoknow.com/How_Styrofoam_is_Bad_for_the_Environment, Options for Businesses to Survive Coronavirus. A lot of people assume that Styrofoam must be safe since it's often what our takeaway comes in… wrong! This effect is further accentuated if food is reheated while still in the container. Beneficial effects of Chemical changes on the environment You have already learned that materials undergo chemical change and produce new products with different identity when combined with other materials in the environment. Even worse, styrene is classified as a carcinogen to humans according to the National Research Council. callback: cb Disposed Styrofoam is a hazardous, non biodegradable waste that acts as a greenhouse gas and contributes to the depletion of the ozone layer which affects wildlife, forests, ocean conditions and our own health. Another reason that Styrofoam is harmful for the environment is that it is made with petroleum, which is a non-sustainable resource. Put Down that Styrofoam Cup! aware. It gained popularity because it is lightweight, offers good insulation properties that keep products cold or hot, and keeps things safe during the shipping process without adding weight. More than 60 scientists contributed to the new report, which aims to present the first comprehensive review of the impact of plastics on the environment … Styrofoam manufacture also uses hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which negatively impact the ozone layer and climate change. Along with polluting the air styrofoam pollutes the rest of the environment since, being plastic, it isn't biodegradable. When Styrofoam containers are used for food, chemicals can leach into the food, affecting human health and the reproductive systems. The chemicals in plastics have been linked to serious health conditions in humans, including birth defects, infertility, cognitive decline and cancer. on: function(evt, cb) { Or, generally why Styrofoam is so bad for the environment. Dangers of Polystyrene. Symptoms of chronic exposure include: Styrofoam appears to last forever, as it is resistant to photolysis, or the breaking down of materials by protons originating from a light source. Styrofoam is a harmful substance partly because it is difficult to clean up. Styrofoam can break down into polystyrene beads, which can be consumed by aquatic and marine creatures. In many communities people are told that their recycling companies will not accept polystyrene products. Research suggests that these chemicals may have negative environmental and health effects. window.mc4wp.listeners.push( Styrofoam is not recyclable, it's harmful to humans, and it's harmful to the environment. })(); By subscribing to our mailing list you will be updated with the latest news from us. Thermocols are not environmentally friendly and they emit chloro fluro carbon (CFCs) when they are burnt. Additionally, petroleum production creates heavy pollution. Permanent article adress: http://greenliving.lovetoknow.com/How_Styrofoam_is_Bad_for_the_Environment. Hydro fluorocarbons are also used in manufacturing process of Styrofoam which has negative impacts on ozone layer and cause global warming. It is also said to be cancerous and hence harmful for all of us. Polystyrene food containers leach the toxin Styrene when they come into contact with warm food or drink, alcohol, oils and acidic foods causing human contamination and pose a health risk to people. Fill in your e-mail: Copyright 2019 American Biopack. Polystyrene is also used to make useful products such as disposable cups, trays, cutlery, cartons, cases etc. The next step is banning polystyrene, better known as Styrofoam, a harmful product still in our society. Harmful effects of styrofoam cups. That is the same grade given to human papillomavirus (HPV), which has been linked to cervical cancer. Every time you make the choice to avoid or recycle plastic products, you lower the risk of environmental damage. Animals that live on or near areas where Styrofoam Unfortunately, Styrofoam is non-biodegradable. World Centric has an excellent sample template letter you can use. This study focuses on the toxic effects of plastic on human health and environment and possible consequences of health risk assessment in Bangladesh. If you fall in that bracket, then here is what you need to know. Styrofoam is a non-biodegradable substance used for insulation, most commonly found in keeping our beverages hot and storing our leftovers. window.mc4wp = window.mc4wp || { Unfortunately, for all of Styrofoam’s good points, data has shown that Styrofoam also has harmful effects. “Evidence indicates that all blowing agents currently used or proposed in connection with the manufact… Especially when paired with liquid HFCs are less detrimental to the ozone than chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), which were used in the manufacturing of Styrofoam … It is also very brittle, and can break into small pieces that are easy for animals to eat. Be conscious of your choices, and encourage those around you to think twice before they throw away plastic or buy unnecessary plastic items. The toxic chemicals are the substance that can be poisonous or cause the health effects, They don’t break down easily in the environment, they can build up the tissues of small organisms, they can move up through the food chain. Let’s take a look at the elements used to make Styrofoam. Polystyrene (also known as EPS Foam or Styrofoam) is a highly popular plastic packaging material which finds wide application in packaging of food items, electronic goods, electrical appliances, furniture etc due to its excellent insulating and protective properties. Learn about the harmful effects of plastic on human health and the environment in this excerpt from chapter 2, “Ecology.” Harmful Effects of Plastic. It leaches into food and drink. The Harmful Effects of Styrofoam The Harmful Effects Of Styrofoam Let's keep the Earth Clean! Everyone knows that Styrofoam is bad for the planet, but do you know exactly why? This, combined with the fact that Styrofoam is lightweight and therefore floats, means that over time a great deal of polystyrene has accumulated along coasts and waterways around the world. Along with the health risks associated with the manufacture of products that use polystyrene, The National Bureau of Standards Center for Fire Research noted 57 chemical by-products released during the creation of Styrofoam. By Leyla Abdilahi The Dangers of Styrofoam Plates Why do we choose to ignore the problem? Avoid drinking tea with lemon, coffee with dairy cream, fruit juices, … Research suggests that these chemicals may have negative environmental and health effects. forms: { Styrofoam is non-biodegradable and appears to last forever. This is accentuated if people reheat the food while still in the container. The brominated flame retardants that are used on Styrofoam are also causing concern, and some research suggests that these chemicals might have negative environmental and health effects. On Human Health. It is broadly used in the manufacture of plastics, resins and rubber. Brooke Lierman are introducing a ban on polystyrene foam foodservice products, including the trademarked Styrofoam … Additionally, petroleum production creates heavy pollution. Styrene is the foundational ingredient used to make polystyrene. Also look for products that are. Recently, a company called Ecovative Design has created a line of products product made from fungi that are Styrofoam-like and aspire to be a more environmentally friendly replacement. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency tabbed polystyrene manufacturing as the nation’s number five creator of hazardous waste. } Styrofoam manufacture also uses hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which negatively impact the ozone layer and climate change. { However, many of us are unaware about its adverse effects on our environment and the toxic emissions it causes when incinerated. It is broadly used in the manufacture of plastics, resins, and rubber. The situation is very fixable with a few changes! Styrofoam is made from polystyrene, which is a petroleum-based plastic. Thermocol is manufactured from a petroleum-based plastic compound known as polystyrene. For those who are exposed regularly in the manufacture of products made with styrene, some of the acute health effects experienced include: Chronic exposure to styrene leads to further complications, including affects on the nervous system. Along with the health risks associated with the manufacture of polystyrene, air pollution is another concern. Styrene (a component of polystyrene) is a harmful chemical that can leech into food and drink. Foam is lightweight and is easily blown by wind or washed away by rain into water sources. commonly known as Styrofoam) causes adverse environmental and health effects. Secondly, it pollutes the environment. Environmental Effects. In fact, Styrofoam is the trade name for polystyrene. “It is in the interest of the health, safety, and welfare of all who live, work, and do business in the City that the amount of litter on the public streets, parks, public places, and open spaces be reduced.” 2. Coming up with a suitable replacement for Styrofoam has been quite a challenge for scientists, although there is hope. Let’s take a look at the elements used to make Styrofoam. Styrene is the building block for Styrofoam, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) lists styrene as a “probable carcinogen to humans”. Food Contamination. 1. Takes up more space than paper, which the most infamous junk in the world. They should also encourage and support movements that do the same. Instead of breaking down completely overtime, Styrofoam cups break into tiny pieces and stay in the environment for hundreds of years. And because polystyrene does not readily biodegrade, once it enters a landfill or the … How To Write a Personal Mission Statement and Why? Lastly, Styrofoam is made from petroleum, which is a non-sustainable resource, the production of which creates heavy pollution and accelerates climate change. Styrofoam isn't just bad for the environment; it's bad for your health . Most organic things are biodegradable, but since Styrofoam is not organic it cannot biodegrade into the earth.

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