Advertisement

Journal of environmental polymer degradation

, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 173–177 | Cite as

Degradation of Polylactic Acid (PLA) Plastic in Costa Rican Soil and Iowa State University Compost Rows

  • Kai-Lai G. Ho
  • Anthony L. PomettoIII
  • Arnoldo Gadea-Rivas
  • Jorge A. Briceño
  • Augusto Rojas
Article

Abstract

In this study the degradation of polylactic acid (PLA) plastic films in Costa Rican soil and in a leaf composting environment was investigated. Three types of PLA films were used: Ch-I, (PLA monolayer plastic films from Chronopol, Golden, CO), GII (PLA trilayer plastic films from Cargill Dow Polymers LLC, Minnetonka, MN), and Ca-I (PLA monolayer plastic films from Cargill Dow Polymers LLC). The average soil temperature and moisture content in Costa Rica were 27°C and 80%, respectively. The average degradation rate of PLA plastic films in the soil of the banana field was 7675 Mw/week. Two compost rows were set up at the Iowa State University (ISU) (Ames) compost site. Temperature and relative humidity of the compost rows were kept at 55 ± 5°C and 50 ± 10% RH, respectively. The degradation rates of GII and Ca-I in the compost rows were 113,290 and 71,283 Mw/week, respectively. Therefore, it was estimated that in Costa Rican soil and in compost rows, PLA would be visibly degraded in 6 months and in 3 weeks, respectively.

Polylactic acid plastic composting environment tropical soil 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

REFERENCES

  1. 1.
    L. F. Cordero (1998) in Crisol Enero, San Jose, Costa Rica, p. 3.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    K.-L. G. Ho, A. L. Pometto III, and P. N. Hinz (1999) J. Environ. Polym. Degrad. 7, 83–92.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    K.-L. G. Ho and A. L. Pometto III (1999) J. Environ. Polym. Degrad. 7, 101–108.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    G. Croteau (1998) BioCycle 39, 71–75.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    American Society for Testing and Materials/Institute for Standards Research (1996) Degradability of Polymeric Materials in a Commercial, Full-Scale Composting Environment, ASTM, West Conshohocken, PA.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    K.-L. G. Ho, A. L. Pometto III, P. N. Hinz, A. Gadea-Rivas, J. B. Salazar, and A. R. Bourillon (1999) J. Environ. Polym. Degrad. 7, 167–172.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    K. E. Johnson, A. L. Pometto III, and Z. L. Nikolov (1993) Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 59, 1155–1161.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    SAS Institute, Inc. (1997) SAS Computer Program, Version 6.12, SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kai-Lai G. Ho
    • 1
  • Anthony L. PomettoIII
    • 1
  • Arnoldo Gadea-Rivas
    • 2
  • Jorge A. Briceño
    • 2
  • Augusto Rojas
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Center for Crops Utilization ResearchIowa State UniversityAmes
  2. 2.Universidad de Costa RicaSan Jose

Personalised recommendations