Plastics Everywhere

Plastic, Plastic, Plastic,- A Comprehensive Guide to What, Where When and How and Why we Must Change

Plastic, Plastic, Plastic,- A Comprehensive Guide to What, Where When and How and Why we Must Change

Plastics are an essential part of our everyday lives. From packaging materials to household items, plastics are used in a wide range of applications. But did you know that not all plastics are the same? In fact, there are several different types of plastics, each with its own unique properties and characteristics. In this blog post, we will explore the various types of plastics and their uses.

Here are the 8 Main Types Of Plastic

1. Polyethylene (PE)

Polyethylene is the most common type of plastic and is used in a variety of applications. It is lightweight, flexible, and resistant to moisture, making it ideal for packaging materials such as plastic bags and bottles. Polyethylene is also used in the production of toys, pipes, and even bulletproof vests.

2. Polypropylene (PP)

Polypropylene is another widely used plastic that is known for its high melting point and excellent chemical resistance. It is commonly used in the automotive industry for the production of car bumpers and interior parts. Polypropylene is also used in food packaging, medical devices, and textiles.

3. Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

Polyvinyl Chloride, or PVC, is a versatile plastic that is known for its durability and resistance to chemicals. It is commonly used in construction materials such as pipes, window frames, and flooring. PVC is also used in the production of electrical cables, clothing, and inflatable products.

4. Polystyrene (PS)

Polystyrene is a lightweight and rigid plastic that is commonly used in packaging materials and disposable food containers. It is also used in the production of insulation materials, disposable cutlery, and CD cases. However, it is important to note that polystyrene is not easily recyclable and can have a negative impact on the environment.

5. Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET)

Polyethylene Terephthalate, or PET, is a strong and lightweight plastic that is commonly used in the production of beverage bottles and food containers. It is also used in the textile industry for the production of polyester fabrics. PET is highly recyclable and can be transformed into a variety of products.

6. Polyurethane (PU)

Polyurethane is a versatile plastic that is known for its durability and flexibility. It is commonly used in the production of foam mattresses, car seats, and insulation materials. Polyurethane is also used in the construction industry for the production of adhesives, sealants, and coatings.

7. Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS)

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, or ABS, is a strong and impact-resistant plastic that is commonly used in the production of electronic devices, automotive parts, and toys. It is known for its excellent mechanical properties and can be easily molded into various shapes.

8. Polycarbonate (PC)

Polycarbonate is a transparent and impact-resistant plastic that is commonly used in the production of eyeglass lenses, safety goggles, and bulletproof windows. It is known for its high heat resistance and excellent optical clarity.

Please see our blog on PC plastic it uses and recyclability.  Its a super plastic if used correctly.

Where do Plastics end Up?


What happens to plastic after you throw it away?

Plastic has become an integral part of our daily lives. From packaging materials to household items, it's hard to imagine a world without plastic. But have you ever wondered what happens to all that plastic after you throw it away? Let's take a closer look at the journey of plastic waste and the places it goes.

1. Landfills

One common destination for plastic waste is landfills. In fact, a significant portion of plastic ends up in landfills around the world. Once in a landfill, plastic can take hundreds of years to decompose, releasing harmful chemicals into the environment.

2. Recycling Facilities

Recycling is an essential step in reducing the environmental impact of plastic waste. Many plastics can be recycled and turned into new products. Recycling facilities sort, clean, and process plastic waste to prepare it for recycling. However, it's important to note that not all plastics are recyclable, and contamination can hinder the recycling process.

3. Incineration

When plastic waste is incinerated, it is burned at high temperatures, converting it into energy. This process, known as waste-to-energy, can help reduce the volume of plastic waste and generate electricity. However, incineration can also release harmful pollutants into the air if not properly controlled.

4. Oceans and Waterways

Unfortunately, a significant amount of plastic waste finds its way into our oceans and waterways. This has led to the formation of massive garbage patches, such as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The impact of plastic pollution on marine life and ecosystems is devastating, with marine animals often mistaking plastic for food or becoming entangled in it.

5. Recycling Innovations

As the world grapples with the plastic waste problem, innovative solutions are emerging. Some companies are developing technologies to convert plastic waste into valuable resources, such as fuel or building materials. These innovations have the potential to transform the way we deal with plastic waste and create a more sustainable future.

Plastics have become an integral part of our daily lives. From packaging materials to household items, it's hard to imagine a world without plastic. However, the convenience of plastic comes at a cost, especially when it comes to its impact on the environment. One of the most alarming consequences of plastic pollution is its effect on the bottom of the ocean and the tiny creatures that reside there.

What happens to plastics in the ocean?

When plastic waste enters the ocean, it doesn't simply disappear. Instead, it breaks down into smaller pieces due to the action of waves, sunlight, and marine life. These tiny plastic particles, known as microplastics, can be as small as a grain of sand or even smaller. They are often mistaken for food by marine organisms, leading to a chain of detrimental effects.

How do microplastics affect tiny creatures?

Microplastics have been found in a wide range of marine organisms, including plankton, the foundation of the ocean food chain. These tiny creatures play a crucial role in maintaining the balance of marine ecosystems. When they ingest microplastics, it can lead to a variety of harmful effects.

Firstly, the ingestion of microplastics can cause physical damage to the digestive system of these organisms. The sharp edges of the plastic particles can tear their delicate tissues, leading to internal injuries and impairing their ability to feed and reproduce.

Secondly, microplastics can act as a vehicle for toxic chemicals. Plastics are known to absorb and concentrate pollutants from the surrounding seawater. When tiny creatures consume microplastics, they also ingest these toxic chemicals, which can accumulate in their bodies over time. This bioaccumulation of toxins can have long-term effects on their health and survival.

What are the consequences for the marine ecosystem?

The impact of plastics in the bottom of the ocean inside tiny creatures extends beyond their individual health. As these tiny creatures are an essential food source for larger marine organisms, the presence of microplastics can disrupt the entire food web. Predators that rely on these organisms for sustenance may suffer from malnutrition or reproductive issues, ultimately affecting the overall health and biodiversity of the marine ecosystem.

What can be done to address this issue?

Addressing the issue of plastics in the bottom of the ocean requires a multi-faceted approach. Efforts should be made to reduce plastic waste at its source through the promotion of sustainable alternatives and recycling initiatives. Additionally, stricter regulations on plastic production and disposal can help minimize the amount of plastic entering the ocean.

Furthermore, raising awareness about the impact of plastics on the marine environment is crucial. Education and outreach programs can help individuals understand the consequences of their actions and encourage them to make more environmentally conscious choices.

Basically they end up everywhere..Form the deepest part of our oceans, the tallest mountain tops and and more worryingly inside all living creatures including all of us!

We really need to ask....

Do We really Need All This Plastic?

Plastic is everywhere. It's in our homes, our workplaces, and our oceans. But do we really need so much plastic? In this blog post, we'll explore the impact of plastic on the environment and discuss alternatives to reduce our plastic consumption.

What is the problem with plastic?

Plastic is a synthetic material made from polymers, and it has become an integral part of our daily lives. However, the problem lies in its durability. Plastic takes hundreds of years to decompose, and as a result, it accumulates in landfills and pollutes our oceans.

According to research, around 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the oceans every year. This has devastating effects on marine life, as animals often mistake plastic for food or become entangled in it. Additionally, plastic pollution has been linked to various health issues in humans, including hormone disruption and respiratory problems.

How can we reduce our plastic consumption?

Reducing our plastic consumption is crucial for the health of our planet. Here are a few ways we can make a difference:

  1. Use reusable bags: Instead of relying on single-use plastic bags, opt for reusable ones made from fabric or other sustainable materials.
  2. Avoid single-use plastics: Say no to plastic straws, cutlery, and water bottles. Instead, choose reusable alternatives like stainless steel straws and refillable water bottles.
  3. Choose plastic-free packaging: When shopping, look for products that use minimal or plastic-free packaging. This can include buying in bulk or choosing items packaged in glass, paper, or cardboard.  We love
  4. Support businesses with sustainable practices: Seek out companies that prioritize sustainability and use eco-friendly materials. By supporting these businesses, you're sending a message that plastic alternatives are in demand. We love 

What are the alternatives to plastic?

Fortunately, there are many alternatives to plastic that are both practical and eco-friendly:

  • Biodegradable plastics: These plastics are designed to break down more quickly than traditional plastics, reducing their environmental impact.
  • Compostable materials: Made from plant-based sources, compostable materials can be broken down into nutrient-rich compost, providing a sustainable solution.
  • Reusable containers: Instead of using plastic food storage containers, opt for glass or stainless steel options that can be used over and over again.
  • Natural fibers: Materials like cotton, hemp, bamboo and wood can be used as alternatives to plastic in various applications, such as packaging and clothing.

By embracing these alternatives and making conscious choices, we can significantly reduce our reliance on plastic and help protect the environment.

Check out these brands for simple everyday stuff  sunglasses, straws, mailing bags.

How to Reduce Our Dependance On Plastic

Plastic has become an integral part of our daily lives. From packaging to household items, it is hard to imagine a world without plastic. However, the excessive use of plastic has led to severe environmental consequences. The good news is that there are steps we can take to reduce our plastic dependence and make a positive impact on the planet. In this blog post, we will explore some practical ways to minimize our plastic consumption.

1. Bring Your Own Reusable Bags

Plastic bags are one of the biggest culprits when it comes to plastic pollution. Instead of relying on single-use plastic bags, make it a habit to bring your own reusable bags whenever you go shopping. Keep a few reusable bags in your car or carry a foldable one in your purse or backpack. By doing so, you can significantly reduce the number of plastic bags that end up in landfills or pollute our oceans.

2. Say No to Plastic Straws

Plastic straws are another major contributor to plastic waste. They are often used for just a few minutes and then discarded. To combat this issue, opt for reusable or biodegradable alternatives such as stainless steel, glass, or bamboo straws. If you don't need a straw, simply refuse it when ordering drinks at restaurants or cafes.

3. Choose Reusable Water Bottles

Plastic water bottles are not only harmful to the environment but also to our health. Invest in a high-quality reusable water bottle made of stainless steel or glass. Not only will you reduce plastic waste, but you will also save money in the long run by refilling your bottle with tap water instead of buying bottled water.

4. Use Eco-Friendly Food Containers

When packing lunch or storing leftovers, opt for eco-friendly alternatives to plastic containers. Look for options made from materials like stainless steel, silicone, or glass. These containers are not only better for the environment but also safer for your health, as they don't leach harmful chemicals into your food.

5. Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk is not only cost-effective but also helps reduce plastic packaging waste. Instead of purchasing individually wrapped items, look for bulk bins at grocery stores or specialty shops. Bring your own reusable containers or bags to fill with the desired quantity of products. This way, you can avoid unnecessary plastic packaging and have the added benefit of buying only what you need.

6. Choose Plastic-Free Alternatives

Be conscious of the products you buy and opt for plastic-free alternatives whenever possible. For example, choose bar soap instead of liquid soap in plastic bottles, use a safety razor with replaceable blades instead of disposable plastic razors, and select products with minimal or recyclable packaging.

Look at ordinary products like sunglasses and ask what is it made from?  Where will the material end up once I'm done with it? Can it ever be recycled into something else? How many times can the product be recycled?  Choose a product with more potential to be recycled in the future. Not one that has just been made from junk materials.  This allows us to produce more junk.

Check out new companies making and sourcing products differently not just what the big brands put infront of us. 

7. Participate in Community Cleanups

Take an active role in cleaning up your community by participating in local cleanup events. These events not only help remove plastic waste from natural areas but also raise awareness about the issue. By joining forces with others, you can make a significant impact and inspire others to reduce their plastic consumption as well.

Reducing our plastic dependence is a collective effort that requires individual action. By implementing these simple changes in our daily lives, we can contribute to a cleaner and healthier planet for future generations. Let's take the first step towards a plastic-free future!

Check out your local beach clean.  Or just pick up a bit of rubbish when you go to the beach. It wont take you long to find some, no matter where you go.


Understanding the different types of plastics is important for making informed choices about their use and disposal. Each type of plastic has its own unique properties and characteristics, which make it suitable for specific applications. By choosing the right type of plastic and recycling it properly, we can help reduce the environmental impact of plastic waste and promote a more sustainable future.

Written By Pip Clark

Founder of Union of Surf

A Brand Making Finding Alternative Materials In Eyewear Production and Packaging

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