The Life and Times of Plastics

Plastics are one of the essential by-products used by many of us. Some of its main purposes are for packaging or being containers for our foods and drinks. However, one may ask: “Where do plastics come from?”.

During Chemistry class, my classmates and I conducted an experiment to test 6 different kinds of plastics, labelled 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. These 6 kinds of plastics of different compositions, which make them have unique purposes. After we were given the 6 kinds of plastics, our teacher gave us an unknown kind of plastic. Based from the data obtained, we deduced the unknown plastic to have the same composition as plastic # 4. From the experiment done, it seems that there is a correlation between the number of the plastic to its specific property. By knowing this, it became easier to determine the unknown plastic through comparison.

However, this is not the only purpose to know the correlation between the plastic’s number and its property. From what my classmates said, plastics with lower density are reusable; this would refer to plastic # 5. From the experiment, I learned that although plastics make our lives easier, it can give out harmful effects to the environment if not thrown in the proper waste container. With this, knowing the types of plastics being used is important for one to know which is recyclable, reusable or not.

Last November, Xavier School implemented the “No Plastics Day” every Wednesday. There were students who supported the program and brought their own containers for foods and drinks that use plastic containers. Many of the students are supporting to change and improve the environment. This way, the use of plastic containers are lessen.

In the modern-day society, we are all living in the plastic age. Many of us use plastics for our own benefits, at the same time, harming the environment. By knowing the properties and types of the plastics, we are able to help lessen the pollution that is destroying our environment. Both the “No Plastics Day” program and this experiment helped me realize that plastics can both be useful and harmful in many ways.


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