Chemistry C1 5.4 Plastic waste.

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What are the issues with non-biodegradable plastics?
They cause unsightly rubbish, can harm wildlife and take up space in landfill sites.
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How are biodegradable plastics decomposed?
By the action of microorganisms in soil.
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What helps the microorganisms break down a plastic?
Making plastics with starch granules in their structure.
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How can we make biodegradable plastics?
From plant material such as cornstarch.
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Many polymers are non-biodegradable (not biodegradable), what does this mean?
That plastic waste is not broken down when left in the environment.
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What happens to non-biodegradable polymers that are disposed of?
Unless disposed of properly, plastic rubbish gets everywhere, it is unsightly and can harm wildlife, even when put in landfill sites it takes up valuable space.
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Why are we using more plastics that are biodegradable?
Microorganisms can break down biodegradable plastics, these plastics break down when in contact with soil.
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Why do some non-biodegradable plastics have cornstarch mixed into the plastic?
Microorganisms break down the cornstarch so the plastic breaks down into very small pieces that can be mixed with soil or compost.
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What is the disadvantage of recycling plastic?
There are many different types of plastic and sorting is difficult.
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How would using biodegradable plastics help with the problems of plastic litter?
The litter would be decomposed by microorganisms when in contact with soil, and so it would not remain in the environment.
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How can cornstarch be used to help with the problems of disposal of plastic waste?
It can be added to plastics made from non-biodegradable polymers so they break down into small pieces, it can be used to make biodegradable plastic.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

How are biodegradable plastics decomposed?

Back

By the action of microorganisms in soil.

Card 3

Front

What helps the microorganisms break down a plastic?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

How can we make biodegradable plastics?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Many polymers are non-biodegradable (not biodegradable), what does this mean?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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