[nonwoven bags need to be reused at least 11 times to make up for its pollution. If nonwoven bags are used only once, the energy consumption of a single nonwoven bag is 17.8 times that of disposable plastic bags, and the carbon emission is 16.7 times that of disposable plastic bags. Assuming that the service time of nonwoven bags can reach more than one year, the energy consumption of nonwoven bags is only 34% of that of disposable plastic bags.]
Under the requirements of the "plastic restriction order", non degradable disposable plastic bags have gradually withdrawn from the market. Reusable non-woven bags have become one of their main substitutes and are widely used in supermarkets, catering, takeout and other fields.
But in fact, non-woven bags are not "cloth" bags. Their main raw material is polypropylene (PP), which is still plastic in nature. Moreover, in order to reduce costs, some businesses use non-woven bags with light and thin materials, which are easy to be damaged and can not be reused.
For these "disposable" non-woven bags, experts said that this is not only a waste of resources, but also contrary to the original intention of the "plastic restriction order", but also aggravates the plastic pollution in disguise.
Non woven fabrics are not "cloth"
In January 2020, the national development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of ecological environment jointly issued the "opinions on Further Strengthening the control of plastic pollution", which is known by the industry as "the most stringent plastic restriction order in history". The plastic products that are explicitly prohibited from production and sale include "ultra-thin plastic shopping bags with a thickness of less than 0.025 mm", and the plastic products that are prohibited and restricted include "non degradable plastic bags".
Therefore, people began to look for alternatives to plastic bags. At present, the more popular ones include non-woven bags, paper bags, biodegradable plastic bags and so on. Among them, the non-woven bag has the characteristics of tenacity and durability, beautiful shape, good air permeability, reusable, washable and printable advertising. For a time, it has become a scenery on the street.
However, with more and more categories and quantities of non-woven bags on the market, it is found that some non-woven bags are thinner and thinner, the number of times they can be used is gradually reduced, and even become "disposable" non-woven bags.
What on earth is a non-woven bag?
Non woven fabric is a kind of non-woven fabric. Its raw material is pp. it directly uses polymer chips, short fibers or filaments to form a new fiber product with soft, breathable and plane structure through various fiber web forming methods and consolidation technology. It is often used in family shopping bags.
"Non woven bag is not a 'cloth' bag, and its standard name is' nonwoven '.' cloth 'may remind people that its raw material is natural, but in fact, its main raw material is PP (accounting for 62%) , this material is also the main polymer component of synthetic plastics. Its essence is still non degradable plastic products. In the natural environment, its degradation process is as slow as that of traditional plastic bags. Therefore, these bags named 'cloth' do not belong to the 'cloth bags' mentioned in the new plastic restriction policy, nor can they be called' non plastic products'. " Said Zhi Zhaohui, general manager of Changzhou longjuntianchun Environmental Protection Technology Co., Ltd.
Although the essence of non-woven bags is still plastic products, if they can be effectively reused and properly disposed after being discarded, they can also reduce the pollution to the environment to a certain extent. However, in the survey, first finance and economics found that although many businesses use non-woven bags as substitutes in takeout packaging services, and many consumers use these non-woven bags as shopping bags, these non-woven bags are easy to be damaged and opened, and can not be reused.
Recently, a professional organization has tested the non-woven bags in circulation. The results show that some non-woven bags have a thickness of 0.1mm ~ 1.0mm and are light and thin. When gently tearing or holding some common daily necessities by hand, the problems of bag body damage and bottom stitching will soon appear. In addition, most of these non-woven bags are customized by brands, with different sizes and specifications. The common size is A4 paper. They can only be used in takeout lunch boxes, which can not be used when shopping or as garbage bags. Finally, they can only be discarded together with the lunch boxes.
Zhi Zhaohui said that due to the low requirements for load-bearing, carrying, waterproof and puncture proof performance of takeout catering bags, many businesses have made non-woven bags lighter and thinner in order to save costs. In addition, due to rough workmanship and poor quality and durability, they can't carry liquids, articles with spikes and overweight articles at all. This leads to the fact that non-woven bags cannot be reused at all. They are usually discarded in the natural environment after being used once. This way of use is not fundamentally different from traditional plastic bags.
First finance found from the website of customized non-woven bags that non-woven bags have been used in all fields, including exhibitions, supermarkets, catering and takeout.
A staff member of an enterprise specializing in the production of customized non-woven bags said: "no matter what specification of non-woven bags can be customized, as long as we can say the requirements, we can produce products. It can be used for any purpose, and the quantity is very large." However, the customization personnel did not disclose the amount.
"Disposable" non-woven bags aggravate plastic pollution
An expert in the field of plastics said that if this non-woven bag is widely used in the field of takeout catering, it is not only a waste of resources, but also contrary to the original intention of the "plastic restriction order", but also aggravates the plastic pollution in disguise.
The expert said that compared with plastic bags, non-woven bags are higher than plastic bags in terms of gram weight, and the use is not more environmentally friendly than plastic bags. The environmental protection of non-woven bags means that they can be used for many times. If non-woven bags become disposable, the pollution it brings is greater than that of plastic bags. Therefore, to limit plastic bags, we should limit "disposable" non-woven bags.
A study published by the UK Environment Agency in 2011 showed that non-woven bags need to be reused at least 11 times to make up for the pollution it brings. If the non-woven bag is used only once, the energy consumption of a single non-woven bag is 17.8 times that of disposable plastic bag, and the carbon emission is 16.7 times that of disposable plastic bag. Assuming that the use time of non-woven bags can reach more than one year (calculated according to once / week), the energy consumption of non-woven bags is only 34% of that of disposable plastic bags, and the emission is 32% of that of disposable plastic bags. Therefore, non-woven bags need to be reused for a long time to achieve the purpose of environmental protection, otherwise it will cause greater environmental pollution.
It can be seen that these lightweight non-woven bags with low utilization rate and high abandonment rate are not environmental friendly, and their environmental pollution is no less than that of traditional plastic bags.
At present, the common non-woven bags in foreign countries are usually coated PP non-woven bags with high thickness (up to 4 mm ~ 10mm), while the common non-woven bags in domestic supermarkets are thin (about 0.1 mm ~ 1.0mm). Although the cost is much lower than that of non-woven bags in foreign supermarkets, they have poor durability and short service time, resulting in higher energy consumption and emission and are not conducive to environmental protection.
The above-mentioned experts in the field of plastics believe that the original intention of the "plastic restriction order" is to effectively, orderly and effectively control plastic pollution by restricting and prohibiting the production, sales and use of non degradable plastic products. However, some brands take advantage of consumers' vague understanding of environmental protection alternative products and use this ultra-thin non-woven bag in large quantities to play an environmental "edge ball".
In view of this situation, he suggested that relevant departments should improve industry standards and strengthen environmental protection supervision. At the same time, more specific management and guidance measures should be formulated for non-woven bags. For example, non-woven bags with standard thickness can be circulated in the market, and consumers should be encouraged to recycle. Non woven bags with less than standard thickness will be punished as traditional plastic bags; In the field of catering takeout, manufacturers should strengthen the universal design of non-woven bags to meet the use needs of non-specific scenes.