A scientific report says that plastic waste can be recycled even to produce carpets.A special enzymes derived from microbes available in nature could be harnessed to degrade different varieties of plastics. Dr Toshiaki Nakajima Kambe of the University of Tsukuba of Japan (School of Bio-industrial Sciences) who visited Thiruvalluvar University recently, said that there are better ways of dealing with the plastic menace with the help of Molecular Evolution Technology (MET).
The environmental pollution caused by the plastics can be addressed very effectively through this technology. Kambe is also researching on developing an emission-free, cost effective bio-ethanol from glycerine (produced from bio-diesel plants), using the enzyme technology in collaboration with various Japanese industries. This scientist is also using the same technology to convert PET bottles into other products such as carpets.
Kambe explained that a particular enzyme TB-35 was capable of degrading plastics within one hour to three days depending upon the chemical composition of the plastic materials. He mooted for development of specific varieties of enzymes to recover pure monomers from polymers from the mixture of plastics. The TB-35, however, may not work in the Indian hot environmental conditions. It is very useful for the weather condition of Japan. This is why the plastic-plagued India sought the help of this Japanese scientist as a part of Indo-Japan Collaboration.