Recycled Plastic Materials vs Virgin Plastics?


I'm a master student now doing research about plastic use in architecture and building constructions. Just want to get more thoughts, I was wondering what do you guys think about using recycled plastic materials over virgin plastics? 

Its pretty clear plastic use in construction industries is inevitable because its still the most convenient material to use, and there are no materials that can work better to replace plastics yet. Even there are recycled materials that can perform the same way, the majority is still on the other side. 

I've seen some experiments done by researchers where they are making furniture and installations using recycled plastics and/or biodegradable materials. Those are some good examples to solve this problem, but usually they are for temporary use. Some recycled materials still have limitation, rather in its performance or longevity. The economical value also become huge consideration for most people, since lots of recycled materials are not as cheap as conventional plastics materials.

What I'm trying to say is, the majority of designers still use virgin plastics for many aspects in their designs mostly because its easier, cheaper, and stronger than recycled materials. As designers and/or architects, what do you think about this gap? Why recycled materials still struggling in industries? Is it because the recycling industries still not trustworthy yet? or is it because the price and its availability which still hard to find?

Sep 19, 19 11:25 am

I avoid plastics altogether in architecture as much as possible and focus on natural, sustainable, environmentally friendly materials, preferably locally sourced, i.e., no tropical hardwood.

Plastics are an environmental nightmare and another arm of the oil industry. More and more municipalities are banning disposable plastics. 

You sound like a salesman. 

Sep 19, 19 12:41 pm

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