The world produces more than 14 million US tons of polystyrene (otherwise known as Styrofoam) each year. There are several well-known qualities that have led to its widespread usage, such as its low cost, light weight and insulation properties. However, these same benefits carry several indirect or hidden environmental and health costs.
- Styrofoam is made from petroleum, a non-renewable resource
- The chemicals used in the manufacturing process (benzene and styrene) have been identified as harmful neurotoxins and carcinogens
- Furthermore, Styrofoam’s lightweight and air-like qualities make it difficult and expensive to recycle, leading to Styrofoam comprising as much as 30% of total landfill volume
Comparatively, compostable products like Better Earth are comprised of renewable, agriculture-based resources and will break down in a commercial composting facility in 90 days or less.