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Why is there so much plastic in the produce aisle?

Apr 4, 2024
Plastic packaging helps food be transported and extends its freshness. But it contributes to climate change and clogs our waterways.
Bagged salads contribute to the plastic waste stream. Americans bought $4.3 billion worth of them in 2023, says Kim Severson of The New York Times.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Lego says making bricks from recycled bottles produces more carbon than new plastic

Sep 25, 2023
Another example of how hard it can be to recycle polymers.
It takes a lot of energy and money to recycle plastics.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Keeping a diary of plastic use can be "a little horrifying"

Aug 22, 2023
What a reporter learned by cataloging all the plastic products around her.
Once plastic products are created, they don't ever decompose — and we keep producing more. "More is getting into our environment, but more doesn't necessarily need to be there," said Susanne Rust, an environment reporter for the LA Times.
Yasin Akgul/AFP via Getty Images

Report calls plastics the "new coal"

Oct 22, 2021
Plastics could be a bigger source of greenhouse gases in the U.S. than the coal industry by 2030, if current production trends keep up.
These plastic pellets are used to make shoes in France. A new report by Beyond Plastics explains the ubiquitous material's environmental impact.
Sebastien Salom-Gomis/AFP via Getty Images

Pepsi pledges to halve unrecycled plastic in packaging by 2030

Sep 15, 2021
The single-serving plastic bottle has been the target of pushback against plastic pollution for decades.
PepsiCo is increasing the recycled content of its packaging. Younger consumers are paying attention to the environmental impact of the products they consider buying, analysts say.
Tim Boyle via Getty Images

Can plastic-eating bacteria help cut down on pollution?

Oct 26, 2020
British and American researchers have developed a “super-enzyme” to reduce the cost and improve the efficiency of recycling of plastic waste.
Municipal workers clear plastic from a canal in Bangkok in June.
Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP via Getty Images

Trump's visit to Shell plant highlights natural gas challenges

Aug 13, 2019
Pennsylvania's natural gas industry hopes the plant can bring a lifeline to a sector beleaguered by overproduction.
Plastic bottles and other trash washed up on the shores of Scotland.
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

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Shell's new plastics plant faces challenges: Balancing local and global impacts

Aug 13, 2019
The new Shell plant will create millions of tons of plastic a year, plus 600 onsite jobs.
Shell's new plant is currently a huge building project. It'll have three reactors and 15 miles of underground piping.

McDonald's shareholders consider a switch to paper straws

May 24, 2018
Plastic straws could be banned in New York City if a new bill introduced in the city council this week goes through. Similar restrictions are being considered for California. Several cities there have already banned the plastic straw. And both the U.K. and Taiwan have announced plans to eliminate them. Today McDonald’s shareholders are scheduled […]

Can single-use plastics really be eliminated?

Mar 9, 2018
Cities and countries are banning or charging fees for single-use plastic items like bags and straws. This week, the wealthy beach community of Malibu, California, voted to ban restaurants from giving out plastic straws, utensils and stirrers. Overseas, Scotland wants to ban plastic straws by 2019; Taiwan is banning single-use plastics by 2030. So is […]