Reader Response Draft 3

In the article “Duo turn plastic waste into concrete idea”, Goy (2016) claims that company BlueRen found an eco-friendly way to incorporate plastic waste into cement by converting plastic waste into carbon nanotubes. Goy stated the technology provides stronger attributes which enhances the overall strength of concrete. Hence, more plastic waste can be recycled which minimizes the use of cement to make concrete. Goy mentioned BlueRen's technology involves the process of converting plastics into hydrocarbon gases and producing carbon nanotubes. Despite studies have shown the normal conversion of plastic waste into carbon nanotubes often emit harmful gases and result in higher costs, BlueRen uses a different catalyst which is more environmentally friendly. BlueRen was supported by external sources and given a funding to extend their research in this field of study. Recycled carbon nanotubes from plastic waste has the capability of protecting the environment while being cost-effective leads to a huge market demand in the near future.

First, understanding the importance of recycling plastic waste and environmental protection is essential. According to Zero Waste Singapore, they stated that plastic waste takes more than a few hundred years to recycle and plastic waste is non-biodegradable.  Landfill spaces are required to bury the plastic or by burning the plastic waste which involves natural resources and energy. Moreover, another article by Jowit (2002) stated that plastic wastes were being washed in to the ocean each year and animals in the ocean might consume the plastic. This raises the possibility of suffocating or getting tangled up with the plastic when the animals use the plastic waste to build their nest which causes the animals to drown or starve. Thus, the importance of recycling plastic waste will undeniably save the environment and protect animals from the potential harm of plastic waste.

Next, the need to understand the demand of carbon nanotubes in the market and how the conversion is cost saving is necessary. Carbon nanotubes are made using pure carbon which is light yet strong. Based on "CNT Technology Overview", nanoscience instruments stated that carbon nanotubes are a hundred times stronger than steel, weighs one-sixth of steel’s weight and is thinner than a strand of human hair. Carbon nanotubes is widely used for structural reinforcement with the flexibility to change many structures and their strength after being discovered. However, forming of the carbon nanotubes is inefficient as the catalyst and nanotube formation requires hot gas steam making it too costly and detrimental due to the harmful gases produced. Therefore, BlueRen company offers a different process concept which uses different minerals as a catalyst, making it more sustainable to the environment and eco-friendly. With carbon nanotube being a huge demand in the market and industry, it would be a key success for BlueRen company once they are able to covert the plastic waste into carbon nanotubes with the new process concept.

Converting plastic waste to carbon nanotubes saves the environment and costs to produce carbon nanotubes by using BlueRen technology.  Converting plastic waste to carbon nanotubes implementing in cement is estimated to have a 30% reduction in cement usage, acting as a cost-efficient alternative. Furthermore, recycling plastic waste will be a better alternative as compared to burning or landfill. 

In hindsight, converting plastic waste to carbon nanotube is a favourable solution for the necessity to protect the environment while being able to be a cost saving solution.


P.Goy (2017). Duo turned plastic waste in to a concrete idea. Straitstimes
Retrieved on 27th September 2017 from

Plastic recycling (2008). Zero waste Singapore,
Retrieved on 27th September from

J.Jowit (2007). Plastic waste threat to marine life. Theguardian.
Retrieved on 27th September from

CNT technology overview. Nanoscience instruments (N.D.).
Retrieved on 27th September from


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