Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Plastic - death by convenience

Plastic, that great invention of convenience is becoming a scourge. Report from BBC.
Years ago in Mexico, as I would see plastic bags scattered across neighborhoods and vacant lots, blowing in the wind, I began to develop a real disdain for the bags and have often thought that very term for plastic bags - scourge but they are just the tip of the iceberg of our irresponsible waste.

Plastic may take hundreds of years to breakdown but as it is breaking down it becomes smaller and smaller particles and molecules of the original toxic material. In the Pacific there is an area called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, GMA video. As these smaller and smaller pieces of plastic breakdown and become more numerous than plankton, animals begin to ingest them and thus these toxic chemicals find another way to enter the food chain. (Another way is through leeching into food stored or heated in plastic.) Here is a study on birds ingesting plastic.

Bisphenol A, one of the toxic substances in some plastics, has been reported to be linked to miscarriages in women with elevated levels of the toxin, video, some vulgar language.

Lot's more info...

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Argentina - a blue print for the future of the USA?

Interesting article looking at Argentina's economic history and how the USA is heading in a similar direction.