Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic | Important Pros and Cons on Plastic (2023)

by Prasanna

Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic: Because of the research conducted by John Wesley Hyatt in 1869, the first plastic product appeared. This original celluloid gained instant praise as the savior of tortoises and elephants. In order to protect the natural world from the human’s destructive demand to consume.

(Video) Plastic advantages and disadvantages

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What is Plastic? Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic

Plastic may be the most polarising substance of recent times. It presents a series of incredible benefits that help people every day, but the product can also be one of the most harmful materials on our planet. It was a word that originally meant the product was easily shaped and pliable. It is only modern definitions that presently have the term concern to a variety of polymers.

The plastics’ advantages and disadvantages required constant review as new polymers went into the development process in order to avoid detrimental environmental impacts of plastics.

(Video) Plastic Advantages and disadvantages

Let’s discuss some of them:

  • Advantages of Plastics
  • Disadvantages of Plastics
  • Comparison Table for Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastics
  • FAQs on Pros and Cons of Plastics

Here are a few of the advantages and disadvantages of plastics:

Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic | Important Pros and Cons on Plastic (1)

(Video) Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic [2020] | Merits and Demerits | Pros and Cons | #plastic

Advantages of Plastics

  1. Many plastics hold a long lifespan that promotes reuse: Plastics don’t require to be treated as disposable or be a single-use product. Many forms of this substance have a long lifespan that is greater than or equal to what other materials rendered. A maintained and well-made PVC pipe has the capability of rendering service for up to a century. Plastics used in construction have an average lifespan of 35 years.
  2. Plastic production processes compare favorably to many other elements: The manufacturing process of plastics can be energy-intensive with fossil fuels, but in comparison to other materials, it is still a resource that is more environmentally friendly. Recycling methods can modify the comparison at times. It is still a distinct advantage that plastics can contribute when consistent reuse occurs.
  3. Plastics occupy less space in landfills: Even though it can take a notable amount of time for plastic materials to crumble down in a landfill, but when compared to other items, the amount of space that plastics take up in these waste disposal areas is minimal. Paper products comprise seven times more volume.
  4. Methane doesn’t form due to decomposing: Organic materials, when commencing decomposing, release greenhouse gases. The focus of this method is often on carbon dioxide, but the methane that gets released is extremely toxic. Methane is up to 20 times more potent as a reflecting atmospheric product when compared to CO2. Plastics don’t release this gas when it begins breaking down, which means it is simpler to calculate the total lifecycle impact of the outcome.
  5. Plastics presents a safe way to transport any demanded items: Since plastic keeps the product safe, so use of plastics for bottles that contain water, and other beverages is better. People utilise the material to affordably and quickly get water to helpless populations all over the world.

Disadvantages of Plastics

  1. Plastics are typically made from resources that are non-renewable: Although the first materials of plastic came from fibers that were plant-based, most of the items that are produced now have fossil fuels as their foundation. It’s normally petroleum, but one can also utilise natural gas to generate this product. About 4% of these fuels persist directly into the plastics industry to produce new products. When a person looks at the number of resources utilised during the refinement process and the anticipated rise in demand, within the next decade, the fossil fuel cost of plastics could reach 20%.
  2. The preponderance of the pollution discovered in the world’s oceans is plastic: Up to 80% of all marine detritus comprises plastic. This problem comes from marine and land sources, often accumulating in large areas of open water where tides come together. This issue affects us to find waste on land, on beaches and even in sources of fresh water. Some of the items that get scattered most often are stirrers, bottles, lids, food wrappers and plastic straws. At the cost of $5 per kilogram, it comes for removing plastic pollution from ocean surface water, but it is only $0.30 for the item’s reused. That’s why the attempt to clean up marine regions is being led by agencies that are non-profitable.
  3. Plastic pollution can lead to several economic losses: Plastic packaging pollution by itself generates an economic loss of approximately $80 billion annually to the global economy. It makes up approximately 50% of all waste from this industry, and practically every other industry practices the item in some way. Construction and building plastics represent 16% of plastic use, while textiles are accountable for about 15%. Since it isn’t beneficial to recycle many of the items, more of it tends to progress into waste streams alternately of reuse. For plastic recycling, the global average is about 14%. by recycling approximately 60% of plastics and its items, India is one of the world’s leaders, while the United States, by recycling only 9%, becomes close to last in the developed world.
  4. Plastic products cannot be infinitely recycled: Metals, because of the properties of the material, can be numerous times recycled into a diversity of different products. Plastics don’t bestow that opportunity. People can only recover or reuse it a specific number of times before it loses its integrity and quality. That means people are more likely to down-cycle this product, stash it in a landfill or incinerate it. Some plastic items and products can’t be recycled at all, furthering the influence of this disadvantage. Over 93 billion products of plastic don’t perceive touched each year, which means they enter into our waste streams.
  5. We must spend energy to clean plastics to recycle items: Plastics that produce cross-contamination with diverse types formulate unusable products. Before recyclers can transform the things into new pieces, they also require to have the items cleaned.

Some products comprise different plastic types in the same item (i.e. a bottle and a lid), producing even more challenges to accomplish. It’s a problem that makes recycling inefficient at best for some communities – and sometimes impracticable.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic | Important Pros and Cons on Plastic (2)

Comparison Table for Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastics

Advantages of plasticsDisadvantages of plastics
Plastic is light in weight.Plastic is considered a non-renewable resource.
They have excellent finishing and can be easily molded.Plastic is soft.
They hold very good toughness and strength.Plastic causes CANCER
They possess a good capacity for shock absorption.Plastics at low temperatures are embrittlement.
Plastic is chemically inert and corrosion-resistant.Plastics show deformation under load.
Plastic possesses good thermal and electrical insulating properties due to having a low thermal expansion of co-efficient.Plastics holds low heat resistance and poor ductility.
Plastic possesses good adhesiveness and is very good water-resistant.Plastics are combustible.
Plastic is cheap to produce.When plastics are burnt, it produces toxic fumes
Plastic does not decompose and holds a recycling process.The recycling process is very costly.
Plastic bottles can be restored and reused over again and again.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic | Important Pros and Cons on Plastic (3)

(Video) Advantage of plastic Recycling ll plastic waste management

FAQs on Pros and Cons of Plastics

Question 1.
What are the pros and cons of using plastic?

Answer:
The benefits of plastics are durable material, low cost, water-resistant, lower energy. And cons are: produces toxic fumes, low temperatures are embrittlement, causes CANCER, etc.

Question 2.
What are the advantages of plastic?

(Video) Advantages & Disadvantages of Plastics (Audio Lesson)

Answer:
The properties of plastic are chemically inert and resistant to rust. They have strong electric and thermal insulating properties and have a low coefficient, thermal expansion.

Question 3.
What are the negative effects of plastic?

Answer:
Toxic chemicals drain out of plastic and are existing in practically everybody’s tissue and blood. Exposure to them is related to birth defects, tumors, disturbance of the endocrine system, compromised immunity, and other disorders.

(Video) Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic Recycling (Audio Lesson)

FAQs

What are the pros and cons for plastic? ›

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using plastic? The benefits of plastics: the production criteria are durable, low cost, water-resistant, lower energy and heavy chemicals and are lightweight. Disadvantages of using plastics are, they pollute our environment. They pose a danger to wildlife.

What are pros of plastic? ›

Plastic is cheaper, lighter, and more versatile than most other materials. It has thermal and insulating properties, which make it ideal for house wiring and electronics. Using plastics in housing insulation makes our homes significantly more energy efficient and reduces the costs of heating and cooling.

What are the 10 advantages of plastic? ›

Advantages of Plastics
  • Its production cost is low.
  • It can be easily molded into various shapes.
  • It is lightweight.
  • It is resistant to corrosion.
  • It can be translucent, transparent, and opaque as well.
  • It is a poor conductor of heat and electricity.
  • It can be used to make roads, utensils, wires, pipes etc.

What mean pros and cons? ›

phrase. The pros and cons of something are its advantages and disadvantages, which you consider carefully so that you can make a sensible decision.

What are 3 benefits of plastic? ›

Top 5 Benefits of Plastic Packaging
  • It's durable. Plastic can be as strong as steel. ...
  • It's lightweight. Plastics are prized for being lightweight. ...
  • It's sustainable. Though many think plastics are a detriment to the environment, the opposite is true. ...
  • It's versatile. ...
  • It's cost effective.

What is plastic essay? ›

Impact of Plastic Pollution

We all must realize the harmful impact it has on our lives so as to avert it as soon as possible. Plastic pollutes our water. Each year, tonnes of plastic are dumped into the ocean. As plastic does not dissolve, it remains in the water thereby hampering its purity.

How is plastic harmful? ›

The harmful chemicals released from plastic products throughout their entire life cycle can pose a serious risk to humans and the environment, including when waste is not properly managed, finding its way to air, water and soils.

What are the pros of plastic bags? ›

Plastic bags are more environmentally friendly than paper bags because they require less energy and water to produce, generate less waste and can be repurposed, reused and recycled.

What is a plastic Class 8? ›

Plastic is a polymer that can be recycled, coloured, reused, mould or drawn into wires or various other shapes. Units of some plastics have linear arrangement while some plastics are formed by the cross linked arrangement of their units.

What are 4 uses of plastic? ›

Plastic is used across almost every sector, including to produce packaging, in building and construction, in textiles, consumer products, transportation, electrical and electronics and industrial machinery.

What is plastic and why is it important? ›

Plastic is durable and provides protection from contaminants and the elements. It reduces food waste by preserving food and increasing its shelf life. It protects food against pests, microbes and humidity. Without this protection, food is more likely to get damaged and become unusable.

What are 3 problems with plastic? ›

The growing rate of plastic production raises problems in many areas of our society. It's contributing to waste and pollution issues, it's impacting our health, and it's threatening our oceans and wildlife.

What are cons example? ›

Examples of Cons:

New car is expensive. Old car runs fine. Insurance will cost more on the new car.

What are a pros? ›

an advantage or reason for doing something: We had to weigh up the pros and cons of outsourcing the work. informal. professional noun. pro.

Are pros good or cons? ›

A pros and cons list is a quick and easy decision-making tool. Pros are arguments FOR taking a particular path. Cons are arguments AGAINST. Once you develop a list detailing both sides of the argument you can make more sensible, informed decisions.

Who made plastic? ›

Belgian chemist and clever marketeer Leo Baekeland pioneered the first fully synthetic plastic in 1907. He beat his Scottish rival, James Swinburne, to the patent office by one day. His invention, which he would christen Bakelite, combined two chemicals, formaldehyde and phenol, under heat and pressure.

Why is plastic good light? ›

Because plastics are light and sturdy, product packaging has become more streamlined. Lids are getting smaller and packages are getting lighter, which winds up contributing to fuel economy as well — when trucks don't have as much weight to haul, they don't use as much gas!

What plastic means? ›

Plastic is defined as a material that contains an essential ingredient an organic substance of large molecular weight. It is also defined as polymers of long carbon chains. Carbon atoms are linked in chains and are produced in long-chain molecules.

What is plastic in English? ›

plas·​tic ˈpla-stik. : a plastic substance. specifically : any of numerous organic synthetic or processed materials that are mostly thermoplastic or thermosetting polymers of high molecular weight and that can be made into objects, films, or filaments. : credit cards used for payment. called also plastic money.

What is plastic example? ›

Plastic is a synthetic material made from various organic polymers, like polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene, nylon, etc., which can be moulded into different shapes and forms when still in melted form and then transform into a solid or slightly elastic form. It is also known as polymers of long carbon chains.

Is plastic harmful to humans? ›

Toxic Chemicals in Plastic

These include endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), which are linked to infertility, obesity, diabetes, prostate or breast cancer, among others. Other health conditions linked to additives include reproductive, growth, and cognitive impairment and neurodevelopment disorders.

Is plastic a good material? ›

It's durability, strength and moldability make plastic the material of choice for products designed to protect and improve human health. 2. It never needs to get out of the kitchen. While it's not indestructible (what is?), with the correct additives package plastic is good at resisting temperature fluctuations.

How is plastic made? ›

Plastics are made from raw materials like natural gas, oil or plants, which are refined into ethane and propane. Ethane and propane are then treated with heat in a process called “cracking” which turns them into ethylene and propylene. These materials are combined together to create different polymers.

How is plastic good for the environment? ›

Plastics Save Energy and Water and Make Less Pollution than Alternatives. The reason plastic products—be it bags, food packaging, or home siding—are often the most affordable option is because they often require far fewer resources to make than paper, metal, stone, or glass alternatives.

What are the cons of plastic bags? ›

The major impact of plastic bags on the environment is that it takes many years to for them to decompose. In addition, toxic substances are released into the soil when plastic bags perish under sunlight and, if plastic bags are burned, they release a toxic substance into the air causing ambient air pollution.

What are the pros of plastic bottles? ›

Compounds such as polyethylene terephthalate have given plastic bottles several advantages, including toughness, energy savings and ease of production. Plastic bottles are economical to make, safe to use and recyclable.

What are the 2 types of plastic? ›

Thermoplastic and thermosetting

As mentioned above, polymers that are classified as plastics can be divided into two major categories: thermoplastics and thermosets. Thermoplastics such as polyethylene and polystyrene are capable of being molded and remolded repeatedly.

What is the history of plastics? ›

It was in 1862 that Alexander Parkes introduced the world's first-ever man-made plastic, at the London International Exhibition. “Parkesine,” as it was called, was marketed as an alternative to ivory and horn that Parks discovered while trying to develop a synthetic substitute for shellac for waterproofing.

Which plastic is best? ›

3 types of plastic that are considered as safer options among the others are Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), High-Density Polyethylene (2-HDPE), and Polypropylene (5-PP).

What are 10 things made of plastic? ›

Some of the objects made using plastic are:
  • Soft drink bottles.
  • Juice bottles.
  • Water bottles.
  • Shampoo/conditioner bottles.
  • Liquid hand soap bottles.
  • Carry-home food containers.

Why plastic problem is important? ›

Every minute, the equivalent of one garbage truck of plastic is dumped into the ocean. This marine litter and plastic pollution endangers aquatic life, threatens human health and results in myriad hidden costs for the economy.

Is plastic important in our life? ›

Also, plastics have not only kept operating costs low but also helped in increasing the overall shelf life of many goods that are packaged in them. They also require less energy for transportation, hold greater mass and help in prolonging the life of many major appliances.

What is plastic need? ›

1. Plastic is cheap, readily available, and its use is widespread. Since plastic is an affordable and durable material, it can be found in everything from packaging materials to plastic bottles, straws to plastic bags, and much more.

Is plastic waste a problem? ›

Every minute, the equivalent of one garbage truck of plastic is dumped into our ocean. Plastic pollution is a global problem. Approximately 7 billion of the 9.2 billion tonnes of plastic produced from 1950-2017 became plastic waste, ending up in landfills or dumped.

When was plastic a problem? ›

Plastic debris in the oceans was first observed in the 1960s, a decade in which Americans became increasingly aware of environmental problems. Rachel Carson's 1962 book, Silent Spring, exposed the dangers of chemical pesticides.

What are the benefits and advantages of plastic? ›

They have a high strength-to-weight ratio, stiffness and toughness, ductility, corrosion resistance, bio-inertness, high thermal/electrical insulation, non-toxicity and outstanding durability at a relatively low lifetime cost compared with competing materials; hence plastics are very resource efficient.

What are 3 harmful effects of plastics? ›

5 Ways Plastic Harms the Environment
  • Kills Ocean Life. By now you've probably heard about the mass amounts of plastic polluting oceans and other waterways. ...
  • Kills Terrestrial Wildlife. Plastic also harms the environment by killing land animals. ...
  • Takes Up Space. ...
  • Produces Chemical Pollution. ...
  • Creates Microplastics.
23 Feb 2021

Why plastic is a problem? ›

But the problem with plastic is that most of it isn't biodegradable. It doesn't rot, like paper or food, so instead it can hang around in the environment for hundreds of years. Each year, 400 million tonnes of plastic is produced and 40% of that is single-use - plastic we'll only use once before it's binned.

What are the effects of plastic? ›

Long term usage and exposure of plastics and plastic products to high temperature can lead to leaching of toxic chemical constituents into food, drinks and water. Indiscriminate disposal of plastics on land and open air burning can lead to the release of toxic chemicals into the air causing public health hazards.

Why is plastic harmful essay? ›

Waste plastic bags are polluting the land and water immensely. Plastic bags have become a threat to the life of animals living on earth as well as in water. Chemicals released by waste plastic bags enter the soil and make it infertile. Plastic bags are having a negative impact on human health.

What are 2 negative effects of plastic? ›

Many chemicals found in plastics are endocrine disruptors, which can cause an imbalance in hormones, reproductive issues, and even cancer. Also, microplastics can leach harmful chemicals such as bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates. Both of these types of chemicals are known to interfere with hormones.

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