Glass or Plastics?

December 17, 2012 6:51 pm Published by


Which one do you think is more environmentally friendly?

Maybe you will say glass is. However, it is very heavy and fragile and may not dispense the entire product resulting in wasted product. On the other hand, plastic may be more dangerous chemical and contain toxic plasticizers such as PVC and Phthalates.

Although, both of them, from an ecological perspective, are energy consumers which impact the environment with waste and global warming emissions that cause long-term air pollution for our planet.  

The charts, in this compare Glass vs. Plastic in regards to environmental aspect.

Economic Input-Output Life Cycle Assessment by Carnegie Mellon University Green Design Institute.  Glass consumes nearly 3 times more energy to produce than plastic.

Even if plastic is better than glass, plastic still leaks toxins into the environment and remains a source of air pollution. Therefore, more research is needed to find alternative materials with fewer pitfalls.

 By the way, one of the materials wit less of an effect on the environment is Polypropylene. It is manufactured from clean technology, Does not leach harmful chemicals (no Bispenol-A, no PVC plasticizers, no Phthalates), need 30% fewer resources than other plastics with 100% recyclable. In addition, it is extremely stable with no leaching or outgassing, less CO2 product during transit with greater impact resistance and resilience (no product breakage during transit).

 Another plastic known as EPS, or foam, when molded releases pentane and has been studied and found to offer minor environmental impact in comparison to VOC emissions from other sources. Various aspects of pollution ingredients were analyzed within the EPS processing industry and found to offer a feasible technology with an economical justifiable solution for reduction of VOC emissions and other fumes.

For pentane abatement, odor control, and air pollution generated by various manufacturing processes, regenerative thermal oxidizers (RTO’s) provide cost effective and energy efficient solutions for manufacturing operations that produce paints, varnishes, pigments, finishing and coating of wood, metal coils, fiberglass and plastic component parts for recreational vehicles, automotive/aerospace, furniture, beverage containers, etc.

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Glass or Plastics 12-13-12

Economic Input-Output Life Cycle Assessment, (Carnegie Mellon), University Green Design Institute,  Available from:



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