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Science/nature/environment

Hopeful news on microbeads

(14 Posts)
Baggs Thu 08-Jun-17 06:40:27

There is hopeful news about microbeads, those tiny bits of plastic that some cosmetics use and which forms of sea life ingest causing them, effectively, to starve to death, as well as polluting the food chain for larger animals. A group at Bath University's centre for sustainable chemical technologies have developed a biodegradable renewable alternative to plastic microbeads that is made of cellulose (the outer wall of plant cells). The group thinks the harmless cellulose beads could be made from leftover resources from, for instance, the paper-making industry.

I love humanity's inventiveness! πŸ’š
Necessity is the mother of invention. β€οΈπŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œ

One of my favourite lines in the report about this is the one about cellulose biodegrading into "harmless sugars". It's nice to see the words sugar and harmless juxtaposed. Non-excessive sugar is harmless. We need to remember that.

Welshwife Thu 08-Jun-17 06:54:01

That is good news. Very interesting the things that some of these young brains come up with. DGS and I were discussing various things his friends are working on last evening.

M0nica Thu 08-Jun-17 08:10:56

Why do we need microbeads at all?

Elegran Thu 08-Jun-17 08:30:33

Because the beauty industry has discovered that they are very effective at increasing profits by persuading vain women that they are essential to their skincare regime.

M0nica Thu 08-Jun-17 12:25:35

They have done without them for centuries. I am sure they can think up some more cod science and additives to dazzle the stupid women who fall for their guff.

Elegran Thu 08-Jun-17 13:42:51

How about lead-based makeup? It gives a lovely pale glow to the complection. Or belladonna drops to dilate the pupils for that sexy look? Tight lacing crushing the spleen for a wasp waist?
Health and safety? Environment? No chance against vanity and the profit motive.

Ana Thu 08-Jun-17 14:54:48

Oh, I really must go to Specsavers!!

I read the title of this thread as 'Microbeards'...thought perhaps it was a new fashion for hairy-chinned women.

And the 'Ow!' thread I keep reading as 'Owl'...confused

MaudLillian Mon 30-Apr-18 08:44:17

I'm very concerned about all plastics in the environment, which means I approve all moves to reject plastic bags and to halt the manufacture of single use plastics. Even if we have plastic recycling facilities, we are still creating more plastic items that will eventually reach the end of their life and be discarded. Our seas are in real peril - not simply from pollution of many kinds and discarded plastic (a lot of it slung overboard from cruise liners and other commercial vessels) but also from over fishing. It's been predicted that at the rate we are currently removing fish and crustaceans from the oceans, the marine environment will effectively be dead by 2050. This will be a total disaster for planet earth. Along with the rainforests, the world's oceans are crucial for sustaining life here. I don't even know why so many people are still eating fish at all, to be honest, it's not even a health food now, with all the toxins in it and - apparently - a lot of tiny bits of plastic too - and obviously the appetite for fish is what is driving the over-exploitation of the oceans. The saddest thing of all, to me, is 'bycatch' - which are the tiny fish that would, if left alone, grow into large fish, able to spawn. Instead they are either thrown back - dead - or used, ground up, to feed farmed prawns or - even worse - animals in factory farms whose natural diet should be grass and wild plants. I'm extremely concerned about this, and many other environmental issues - what sort of world is my baby granddaughter going to inherit?

Lindylo Mon 30-Apr-18 10:50:59

Very good news. Hate to think how many of those beads we've eaten over the years.

Telly Mon 30-Apr-18 13:52:58

I think we could live without microbeads, their use should be banned full stop.
As for over fishing - we just never seem to learn. Tuna have been spotted in British waters and in the same report game fishers have their greedy eyes on them already. As a species we won't be satisfied until there is nothing left to trawl.

Baggs Mon 30-Apr-18 17:10:27

Their use has been banned in cosmetics and cleaning products.

Baggs Mon 30-Apr-18 17:11:42

Do 'game fishers' use trawl nets? I thought they used rod and line.

greyduster might know... I'll give her a shout.

Baggs Mon 30-Apr-18 19:50:58

Telly, the answers from Greyduster are here: www.gransnet.com/forums/ask_a_gran/1247763-Ahoy-Greyduster

Jalima1108 Mon 30-Apr-18 20:08:51

They are banned in this country Telly
www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jan/09/plastic-microbeads-ban-enters-force-in-uk

A good move by the government, but of course the Guardian has to include a little negative paragraph at the end of the article.