via Fast Company
If we can’t ditch plastic, we can at least make it more recyclable—at least that’s what researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Department of Energy are proposing with a new material called PDK.
The average American generates 220 pounds of plastic waste each year. A vast majority of it is not recycled, even if you send it to a recycling facility. Most plastic ends up in a dump.
There are all sorts of reasons for this. Some recycling facilities don’t have the technology to sort plastic correctly. And for companies, it’s actually cheaper to make “virgin” plastic than to produce recycled plastic. Recycled plastic is far from perfect anyway. Generally produced by melting down old plastic, recycled plastic actually needs virgin plastic mixed in to keep its structure. An estimated 91% of all plastic isn’t recycled at all.