Bio-based plastics are made from renewable resources such as plants, sugarcane, cornstarch, and vegetable oil.
These plastics are designed to have a lower carbon footprint than traditional petroleum-based plastics made from renewable sources. However, they typically retain the same issues that regular plastics have, such as Persistent Plastic Particulate Pollution.
Soil and marine biodegradable plastics, on the other hand, are designed to break down into natural components in soil and marine environments.
They are typically made from biodegradable polymers. These plastics are engineered to biodegrade through natural microbial activity in soil or seawater environments, which breaks the plastic into water, carbon dioxide, and other natural substances.
The critical difference between bio-based plastics and soil and marine biodegradable plastics is their intended end-of-life characteristics.
Bio-based plastics may not necessarily biodegrade, but they are made from renewable resources, whereas soil and marine biodegradable plastics will break down in specific environments. Bio-based plastics may be recyclable or compostable, while soil and marine biodegradable plastics may or may not be recyclable. They, however, are intended to reduce the amount of plastic waste that ends up in soil and marine environments. Biodegradable plastics can be made from bio-based materials. Some bio-based plastics can also be biodegradable.
While bio-based plastics and soil and marine biodegradable plastics aim to reduce the environmental impact of plastic waste, they differ in terms of their intended end-of-life characteristics.
Bio-based plastics are made from renewable resources, while soil and marine biodegradable plastics are designed to biodegrade in specific environments, and they can also be made from renewable resources.