Friday, November 12, 2010

Green Genius: biodegradable plastic bags

Green Genius makes a line of revolutionary biodegradable plastic products. Their Green Genius biodegradable food bags and trash bags, are the same strength and price of regular trash bags. But unlike their more stubborn cousins that may take a thousand years to biodegrade, Green Genius bags biodegrade under active landfill conditions, typically within 1 to 15 years (ASTM D5511).

Here's how they do it:

Step One: Plastic is combined with a proprietary additive called EcoPure that bonds organic “nutrients” to the plastic’s molecular structure. The addition of this additive allows the plastic to be eaten by microbes, making the whole bag biodegradable.

Step Two: When a Green Genius plastic bag is disposed of in a microbe-rich environment, like a landfill, the microbes are attracted to the embedded "nutrients" and begin to colonize on the plastic.

Step Three: Microbes begin feeding on the nutrients, and the plastic begins to break down into simpler organic matter like sugars, fatty acids and amino acids.

Step Four: The bag is now entirely edible by microbes, which attracts even more microbes, and a feast ensues.

Step Five: Microbes continue to feed on the plastic until only the simplest organic matter remains — water, biogas (carbon dioxide and methane) and biomass (humus).

To learn how these products biodegrade, click here

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