What is “Total Degradation”?
earth 2 earth Oxo-Degradable film totally degradable plastic, creating end-products that are cost-competitive.
Total degradation is a two-stage process that happens as a result of exposure to heat, UV light, or mechanical stress, or the combination thereof. Firstly the plastic is converted by reaction with oxygen to molecular fragments that are water wettable, and secondly, these smaller oxidized molecules degrade by bio-degradation. The microbial growth on the molecular fragments leads to the formation of Carbon Dioxide, Water, and biomass. There is no harmful residue left over.
How it works
Chemistry and Degradation Process
The properties that make plastic unique such as its toughness, flexibility and tear resistance, is the result of its high molecular weight. This means that each molecule is packed with atoms. These atoms are held together by covalent bonds. A regular polyethylene (PE) films have an approximate molecular weight of around 300,000 compared with Carbon Dioxide (CO2) and Water (H2O) which have a molecular weight of around 44 for CO2 and 18 for H2O.
The degradation of polyethylene results from the breaking down of these covalent bonds. thus lowering the molecular weight, resulting in a loss of its physical structure. earth 2 earth containing TDPA (Totally Degradable Plastic Additive) displays a decrease in molecular weight down to 4,000 from a previous weight of 250,000 (proven by two independent analysts), Showing a more rapid breakdown of the polymer.
The degradation of our product can be initiated by a number of factors, such as heat, UV light, oxygen, and stress (i.e. tearing and stretching). Once the process has started it will continue. The end result of this process is CO2, H20, and biomass.
As the molecules break up, at no stage during the process are acidic or alkaline fragments formed which can damage or contaminate the environment. When the molecules become small enough, micro-organisms will use them as food and thus bio-degrade them.
Our plastic will also degrade when exposed to composting temperatures through thermal degradation and from sunlight through photodegradation in as little as a few months. We have no knowledge of any commercial degradable plastic that has the same properties as ours.
Why use earth 2 earth Oxo-degradable
Totally degradable plastic has many obvious benefits to the environment over the use of regular plastic. For example,
The plastic degrades harmlessly to water, carbon dioxide, and biomass – leaving no harmful residues.
Using these refuse sacks can increase landfill capacity by up to 30% – due to the bag’s ability to degrade quickly, it enables the contents held within the bag to also degrade. Compared to a regular non-degradable refuse sack where the contents are preserved within.
earth2earth has a highly visible design incorporating a burgundy color and the earth2earth logo to promote awareness of its ability with staff, customers, and the general public.
This product contains high-performance resins to EU and UK standards