Too much plastic in the ocean? Maybe we could put it in the sky.
Researchers at Washington State University say they’ve found a way to make jet fuel out of something the world throws out in great quantities every day: household plastic.
While a lot of us have been putting our plastic into the recycle bin, huge amounts of it ends up in landfills – or worse, in the ocean – and these plastics are hard to break down, which means they sit there and pollute for years and years.
The Washington State University researchers, though, say they’ve come up with a way to break the plastic down chemically.
It eventually leads to jet fuel and diesel fuel, and it’s produced in a way that recovers nearly all of the energy put into the original plastic.
The researchers are looking at ways to make this process even greener, which will be useful when those flying cars from the “Back to the Future” movies show up and we need to pour all our household waste into the Mr. Fusion compartment to fuel the thing so we can travel through time.
If all the talk of jet fuel has you thinking about a trip, here’s a suggestion: head to Newhaven, in southern England and check out the new memorial bench to rapper Easy-E.
The town council admitted they weren’t familiar with Easy’s music, but local hip-hop fan Guy Stevens said, hey, maybe a bench with his name on it will put us on the map, and the council said, sure, why not.
Stevens says he’s thinking about building on this success – maybe proposing the community change its name in Easy-E’s honor from Newhaven to Newcompton?
Plastic water bottles may one day fly people cross-country (Washington State University)