Turning Plastic Waste into a Soil Additive

Scientists at University of California, Riverside (UCR) have devised a way to convert plastic waste into a highly porous form of charcoal that, when added to farmland soil, can improve water retention, contribute to aeration and even capture carbon. The technique entails mixing one or two common forms of plastic with the leftover stalks, leaves and husks from corn and compressing the resulting amalgam in hot water. This “could be a very useful biochar because it is a very high surface area material,” says Kandis Leslie Abdul-Aziz, a professor at UCR. Learn more about how the new method can create a more sustainable alternative to the current expensive and difficult process of recycling plastic at SciTechDaily.

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