Plastic pollution is a major problem for the world’s oceans and non-biodegradable plastics continue to fill the planet’s landfills and litter the landscape. There are many approaches to making plant-derived, biodegradable plastics but most of these materials do not offer the resistance to heat and moisture that is characteristic of petroleum-based plastics.
We have been using salt to keep winter roads free of ice and snow since the late 1930s. In the United States alone, some 20 million tons of salt are applied to roadways each year. And while its use has real benefits in terms of safety and navigation, there have been cumulative costs to the environment, including degrading freshwater resources and contaminating groundwater.