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William Roy Callahan

I believe Robbins is correct about the Bioplastics but I also believe that not only should the public help with recycling that the actual manufacturers of hard to recycle plastics or non bioplastic should give a percentage of their products profits back to recycling.

Anthony C

After reading “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World”s Plastics Problem” by Jim Robbins, it really changed the way that I think about the environment and how it is really in trouble. The great pacific garbage pile is growing more and more each day and if we don't find a solution soon the whole world will likely begin to look that way. Bio plastics were an idea produced by companies and according to the article were about “70 percent chemicals and 30% sugar cane.” These bioplastics are said to solve the world's plastic problem but they are a cheap alternative to the real solution, which is to reduce and reuse plastic. THe only problem is 600 billion dollars isn't very cheap which is what it would cost to solve this plastic problem the correct way. There needs to be a way to recycle the correct way at a reasonable cost, as soon as possible.

Alicia L

I've always known that plastic was a big problem in the world today, and when I saw bottles with advertisement's about using less plastic in their bottles I always thought it was really good. But after reading this article by Jim Robbins, I realized that Bioplastics really aren't as good as I thought they were. There is still a majority amount of 70% plastic that goes into these bottles and only 30% is sugar cane. Although the companies are trying to use less plastic, it still isn't enough unless they find a way to make these bottles "one use plastics" such as plastic forks and spoons. Jim states that "11 million metric tons of plastic finds its way to the oceans each year", this has a huge impact on the marine life that puts many species in the water in danger every year. This number keeps increasing every year and unless something is done our oceans will be filled with more plastic then animals. Plastic waste could be reduced by about 80% in the next two decades if $600 million dollars is used to create a system that not only recycles plastic but it reuses it also. This may sound like a lot of money but all this money will have to be used to try and save marine life later on if we don't change the way we use plastic now.

Mustafa h

After I read the article “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastics Problem” by Jim Robbins I learned about the ongoing pollution that is happening in the ocean. I saw how the environment is changing drastically and it changed my whole perspective of what's happening. There is a lot of plastic in the ocean but there might be a solution to it. This solution could be bioplastic. Bioplastic is a type of plastic that is made from 30% sugar cane and 70& traditional based oil. The problem with bioplastic is that the sugar cane dissolves fully but the traditional oil does not dissolve completely. The other problem with bioplastic is that it costs about $600 billion dollars to create which isn't very cheap. There has to be a cheaper solution to this problem and they need to find it very quickly. The pollution in the ocean is getting worse and worse as we speak.


After reading this article, “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastic Problem” I have noticed that one of the new, so-called, solutions is bioplastics is not a real solution. A new plastic cannot solve the plastic problem that the world is facing, and advertising bioplastics as the world’s solution takes away from the actual solutions that need attention. In paragraph 19 of the article, Rebecca Burgess calls bioplastics a “false solution” which I agree with because we should not pretend to have a solution when it is just another plastic that is recycled by a factory. A solution to this plastic problem would be a way to breakdown the plastic we already have and new material that breaks down in nature that is just as cheap and durable as plastic. It does not exist now nor should we pretend that it does. Manufacturers cannot pretend that they have found or would care enough to put in the money to the problem that they are the biggest cause of.

Sol Argentina

Although we as a society are more aware each day of the ongoing problem of pollution and contamination, we still have a long journey to make so we can live on a more sustainable planet. That said, it is important to be aware of what one can do when consuming a product that is possibly harmful to the environment, such as the problem of plastic pollution.
This article talks about a new kind of bottles made of bioplastics, like the Plant Bottle from Coca-Cola, which are different from traditional bottles, because they are made of sugar cane and other plants, making them supposedly more biodegradable. Although it is a good intention of creating a solution for the plastic waste problem, it is not viable. As Rebecca Burgess says, it is a false solution, because plastic bottles made of biodegradable components need to replicate the same functions as the average plastic bottles used at the moment, and they also have to safely disappear when thrown away. Sadly, neither of these bioplastics compare to the strength and properties of the normal plastic bottles, they cost way too much to produce, and they are not as “biodegradable” as they appear to be. It is true that bioplastics can be broken down by microorganisms and become part of the natural world again in a short period of time, but this only happens if the plastic is carefully collected and composted in controlled environments in high-temperature industrial composting facilities, which there are not many of them in the world. In other words, burgess says that it is a false solution because they end up being as single-use as normal plastics because there are limited ways to compost them, and because of this, they end up in landfills and oceans, contaminating way more. That leaves us with the only possible solution for this problem: recycling.
In my opinion, I think that the main responsibles for curtailing this waste are the company producers of products packed in plastic. I think that there is an extra massive production of products which are unnecessarily launched on the market since they are not consumed in their majority thanks to the great offer that is presented, and these products are mostly packed in single-use plastics. These plastics are definitely not followed after launch, so they may or not end up being recycled. I think that the idea of “extended producer responsibility” that involves companies in a project of reducing plastic waste is a great idea, because the producers of this problem should be involved in trying to solve it. And, luckily, Nestle Waters and Evian are currently working on trying to solve this problem, looking for ways to replace the irresponsible use of plastic
I have always been really interested in finding new ways to reinvent ourselves to help the environment, but, unfortunately, there are things that ordinary people cannot take care of, such as the consumption of products packed in single-use plastics. This problem is something that challenges us all, whether we as consumers take responsibility for recycling the waste we generate or the industries in trying to achieve more eco-friendly ways of production. This article has made me more aware of the importance of taking care of our planet with simple things like recycling and reusing, that I will definitely support to improve a bigger ecological culture among everyone and to create a more sustainable planet.

Yohana Orellana

Nicholas Kristoff speaks on how regardless of the poverty, discrimination and hardships Hispanic Americans tend to “live significantly longer than white or black Americans.” He and many others wonder what it is that keeps these families/people strong to overcome the struggles and surpass the life length compared to other Americans. Kristoff’s point is well said and coming from a Hispanic family I can agree that for some reason, no matter what is going on, we’re still happy and stay united. Kristoff questioned what it is that keeps us going, and that does differ for everyone, some people anchor onto the religion and faith, other people cling onto their job and their aspirations, while others just rely on their families. The secret to a happier longer life doesn’t have to do with what we have but what we hold dearest in moments of hardships. Kristoff also mentioned that there is a paradox within the paradox, being that the second generation tends to lose this and die earlier. However, what Kristoff doesn’t understand is that not everyone loses this anchor. Some may, but not all. Most people who do are kids who swat and assimilate more into the American lifestyle and lose the authenticity that makes Hispanic Americans have a longer life. As a person, one goes through many things in life and tend to lose their “anchor”.

Karial Cai

“Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastic Problem” is a great article that describes the disadvantage of bioplastics comparing to the petrol-based plastics. However, I don’t totally agree with Robbins and Rebecca’s main idea. In my opinion, bioplastic is not the solution for now but for the future. In the article, there are three essential imperfections. First of all, bioplastic is expensive to produce. Second, the performance of bioplastic is unable to compare with traditional plastics. Third, as Rebecca Burgess, the CEO of City to Sea, said. “Bioplastic is basically the same as plastic and hard to recycle or decompose in the natural environment.” Admittedly, these three main disadvantages severely block the process which bioplastic replace the traditional plastic. But as Robbins’ said that a new kind of bioplastic –PEF, polyethylene furanoate, which produced from sugars – was developed. Moreover, PEF is rather better than bioplastics we used today. I believe with the remarkable improvement f technology, there will be a new type of bioplastic, which is cheaper, higher quality and natural consumable or recyclable that comes out and change the plastic industry forever.
However, before the better bioplastic successfully developed, people living on earth still need to treat plastic pollution seriously. The most effective way is reducing plastic usage. The government need to use policies in order to force companies like Coke-Cola to facilitate the recycling of plastic bottles. People who enjoy Starbucks and use plastic bags should turn to bring their cups and bags.
In conclusion, bioplastic might be the solution of plastic problem in the future. But now, relying on people’s consciousness is the only way to protect our planet.

Sheridan H.

Reading “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastic Problem” has really opened up my eyes to actually how much plastics and bioplastics are in the ocean today. Taking 600 million dollars to solve this problem seems like a lot, but keep in mind that money like this is being spent multiple times a day, and don't even mention what useless stuff it is being spent on. It's sad how the marine life suffer with so much trash and plastic in their homes. Putting in the effort to try and clean up the mess would benefit them so much. They share the earth with us you know! They should have a clean home too.

Chris Spenelli

Although I admire the hopeful idea that microplastics are better for the environment, I believe that it is too late to use a different kind of plastic to curtail the pollution we are causing. We have to instead just stop using plastic in general or find better ways to recycle plastic.

Brendon Kim

The article "Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World's Plastic Problem" was a huge wake-up call on how much plastic there is in our waters today and that we need to change our ways. Even with the millions of dollars going into the project of getting rid of waste and plastic out of our waters, it still isn't enough. People need to realize that our world is getting smaller and smaller, while the amount of trash in the ocean is getting larger and larger.

Patricio N

After reading the article, “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastics Problem” by Jim Robbins, it became evident that some solutions that companies are trying to implement aren’t as beneficial as it is advertised to be. An example of this is the Plant Bottle by Coca-Cola. The Plant Bottle is a new bottle that is made up of 70% plastic and 30% sugar cane and other plants. This can be viewed as a false solution because though it was made to solve the issues of a plastic bottle, it fails to fix the main issues. Past issues such as decomposition and methane gas being released into the environment still stay relevant in new bioplastics while new problems begin to arise at the same time. Due to the plants in bioplastics, herbicides and pesticides that were used on crops have found their way into the environment, which can cause large-scale agriculture issues. Though its important to produce eco-friendly products, its necessary to be aware of the damage these products might contribute.

Thomas Pham

1. Bioplastics, like Coca-Cola’s plant bottle, are different from traditional plastics because they are partially made from sugarcane and other plants, which is supposed to make them more biodegradable than oil-based plastics that never break. They’re supposed to be one of the primary solutions to the world’s plastic problem. However, in one of Robbins’ sources, Rebecca Burgess calls them a “false solution” and I believe that is because they just reduce the plastic problem. To elaborate, bioplastics like the plant bottle are still partially oil-based and they just deteriorate a little bit faster than normal plastic. They still pollute the environment and there are limited ways to compost them. According to Robbins, the three key issues with using, manufacturing, disposing of, or recycling plastic is that making bioplastics that are both cheap and effective has posed a major challenge, bioplastic needs to replicate the same functions as a single-use plastic packaging made from oil, and if bioplastics end up in landfills (instead of composting places), they can last for centuries as well as release methane.

2. In my opinion, I think that the companies who package their products in plastics are responsible because they use an unnecessary amount of plastic for their products and that plastic packaging will just be thrown away once the product is opened. There are a variety of other ways they could package their products. I understand that plastic is a cheap alternative, but there are other cheap alternatives that they could find. Furthermore, the idea of “extended producer responsibility” is when the companies or producers of a product take responsibility for the entire lifecycle of their products. Two ways companies are working to change how we use, produce, and dispose of plastics are vowing to support moves to implement extended producer responsibility in the beverage industry and making bottles from 100 percent recycled PET, which is single-use plastic packaging made from oil.

3. The vivid and precise signal verbs Robbins uses to introduce his summaries and quotations include ‘said..,’ ‘instead,’ and ‘indeed’.

Original: The company says that PlantBottle packaging now accounts for nearly a third of its North American bottle volume and seven percent globally.

Revised: The company claims that the PlantBottle packaging now accounts for nearly a third of its North American bottle volume and seven percent globally.

4. The strategy for curbing climate change that surprised me the most was the “Build with ‘greener’ cement compounds” strategy because I didn’t know what it was talking about at first and it was kind of confusing. I think this is a very creative and specified strategy and it isn’t a strategy you’d usually see so it surprised me.


After reading the article “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve the World’s Plastics Problem” by Jim Robbins, I agree with Robbins and the strategies he believes are the only ones that work to solve this global issue. Industry marketers that claim bioplastics as the solution to plastic pollution are false due to the difficult challenges it poses. Bioplastics are a type of plastic made from renewable sources. Instead, Robbins along with other experts believes that the solution to plastic waste is by overhauling the global economy to recycle large amounts of plastic. As stated by an expert in the article, “a key step is requiring companies that use packaging to play a lead role in its recycling and reuse. I totally agree with this statement because companies are basically the cause of large amounts of plastic waste in the first place. Companies like Coca-Cola use the term “plant-based” to imply that bioplastics are helping solve the plastic waste issue when in reality there is no difference because they still find their way into the environment. Another challenge that comes with the idea of bioplastics is how difficult it is to replace billions of plastic bottles that exist on earth. More challenges that come with bioplastics are finding a material that is cheap and effective to be used as single-use plastic. The use of bioplastics will also increase the land needed for agriculture. If the earth continues on its path of plastic pollution, the amount of waste will triple by 2040. Overall, bioplastics will not solve the world's plastic problem by itself but it will help along with the solution of a $600 billion overhaul of the world's plastic system that reuses plastic in a circular economy.

Celest Garcia

In the article “Why Bioplastics Will Not Solve The World’s Plastics Problem” the author Jim Robbins explains why the efforts of creating Bioplastic are not enough to reverse the effects of pollution. I do agree with Robbin's points and arguments, however, I would like to address the fact that it is nice that companies like Coca-Cola are making an effort to be sustainable. I think it is rare to see big companies make changes within their businesses to be more environmentally friendly, though it may not always be the best method. Yet, Robbins makes a good point on how big of a problem all kinds of plastics are for the world's oceans, rivers, and lakes. I also agree that most of the world's Bioplastics end up in the same place all-plastic does, which is landfills and garbage patches. Then they say in different environments until they break down, which can take many years. Robbins explains that Bioplastics are made from plants and because of this they create bigger problems. Therefore, the best method for future businesses is to make their plastics from already made plastic. Recycling and reusing plastics have been known to be very helpful to the environment as Robbins mentions. However, I’m not so sure about how much change PET bottles will bring. It would be a big accomplishment if PET bottles were the future, yet, I find it a stretch to say they would fix all plastic pollution. I believe changes need to be made in communities to limit the number of waste people use on a daily basis. This is the biggest impact on the environment but hardly any people are willing to make sacrifices. These sacrifices can be small and big depending on how much each individual contributes to pollution in the areas they live in.

Ali Sadiq

I totally agree with Jim Robbins, instead of creating bioplastics which will end up in the same place where traditional plastics are such as bodies of water. We should focus on educating and implementing ways for people to recycle. If companies and businesses decide to create bioplastics that will cause a trend in the industry which will entice other business to follow suit. This is not the answer as people already throw plastics into the wrong container, but if we were to implement some sort of law to force these businesses to change the materials that they use to produce products we will not have to worry too much about how consumers are disposing of these items. Even though the government has the power to pass laws on these businesses it is very unlikely that this will occur instead it is more beneficial and likely effective to follow Robbins guidance and change the way that people interact and dispose of plastics.

Luca Satterlee

I believe bioplastics are in fact the solution. Bioplastics are made of cornstarch which is bio degradable, meaning it will turn into dirt. If companies started to use bioplastics it would lower the amounts of plastic in the ocean. Instead it would turn into dirt which wouldn't ruin the environment and pollute the planet.


As much as I would like to agree with Jim Robbins, many people would still opt for the more convenient option, ex. using single use plastics means they don't have to do the dishes. I like the bioplastic alternative for those who choose to use single use products for convenience when reusable options are not as accessible

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