a. Why paper vrs Plastic
b. The effects on our environment
b.i.1. Destroying our forest (http://web.archive.org/web/20070619104819/http://www.ecology.com/feature-stories/paper-chase/index.html) b.i.2. High level of consumption and waste
b.i.3. paper polution
b.i.4. Pulp Mills contribute to:
b.i.4.a. air and land polution (Discarded paper is a major component of many landfill sites. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_paper#cite_note-epa-1) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_paper#cite_note-5) b.i.4.a.i. Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) sulfur dioxide (SO2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) are all emitted during paper manufacturing. Nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide are major contributors of acid rain, whereas CO2 is a greenhouse gas responsible for climate change. b.i.4.b. water pollution
b.i.4.b.i. Waste water discharges for a pulp and paper mill contains solids, nutrients and dissolved organic matter such as lignin. It also contains alcohols, and chelating agents and inorganic materials like chlorates and transition metal compounds.Nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus can cause or exacerbate eutrophication of fresh water bodies such as lakes and rivers. Organic matter dissolved in fresh water, measured by Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD), changes ecological characteristics, and in worse case scenarios leads to death of all higher living organisms.
Waste water may also be polluted with organochlorine compounds. Some of these are naturally occurring in the wood, but chlorine bleaching of the pulp produces far larger amounts. Recycling the effluent (see black liquor) and burning it, using bioremediation ponds and employing less damaging agents in the pulping and bleaching processes can help reduce water pollution.Discharges can also discolour the water leading to reduced aesthetics. This has happened with the Tarawera River in New Zealand which subsequently became known as the “black drain”. b.i.4.c. Waste
b.i.4.c.i. Paper waste accounts for up to 40% of total waste in the United States, which adds up to 71.6 million tons of waste per year in the United States alone. Paper waste like other wastes faces the additional hazard of toxic inks, dyes and polymers that could be potentially carcinogenic when incinerated, or comingled with groundwater via traditional burial methods such as modern landfills. Paper recycling mitigates this impact, but not the environmental and economic impact of the energy consumed by manufacturing, transporting and burying and or reprocessing paper products. b.i.5. Paper recycling produces polution (sludge produced during deinking) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_paper#cite_note-2 b.i.6.
b.ii. Plastic –
c. How is it sustainable
http://www.care2.com/greenliving/paper-bags-vs-plastic-bags-which-is-really-better.html Definition http://www.epa.gov/sustainability/basicinfo.htm
Plastic decay in ocean http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/08/090820-plastic-decomposes-oceans-seas.html Bisphenol A http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/geopedia/Bisphenol_A Where does paper come from? http://www.personal.psu.edu/afr3/blogs/SIOW/2011/10/where-does-paper-really-come-from.html How paper is made : http://www.madehow.com/Volume-2/Paper.html