Why don't we like plastic?

Why did we decide to opt for plastic-free acoustic booths?

by Louise Landemaine
Why don't we like plastic?

Who hasn't wished they could buy the latest phone while theirs was still working?

Indeed, since the last century, we have all evolved our consumption patterns. This new period is punctuated by the increase in our purchasing power and the desire not to lack anything. 

In this way, plastic has become a real success and has become part of everyone's daily routine. 

It's easy to ask how many objects containing plastic are around us? 

We all know it, but this consumption of plastic usually ends up in the oceans, we ingest it and it goes straight to the wall.

Every year, each person consumes an average of 53 kg of plastic.
L' (2019, March 5). 53 kg of plastic per capita: the alarming report of WWF. L'express

These are the main reasons why Leet Design is committed to the concept of "0 plastic" in our production. Dive into this article to find out what is wrong with plastic and what we are doing in this fight.

Before we start, a little history...

In the 1950s, the war was officially over and left a bitter feeling of deprivation. 

As a result, things were seen as big and the reconstruction period was marked by a folie de grandeur. 

It was from this time onwards that the assembly line industries came into being and that the search for cost reduction in production became the focus of decisions. 

With an almost miniscule salary of about 20 euros per employee, companies then turned their attention to the choice of raw materials.

As a result, plastics have been able to integrate and replace many raw materials with their multiple advantages to become the indispensable material in any industry.

This is because plastic is an ultra-versatile material that is light, inexpensive, easy to modulate, can be coloured/fire resistant, etc. 

The plastic problem

The ecological impact 

It is well known, but plastic is one of the main culprits of climate change.

In fact, 370 million tonnes are produced each year, producing an average of two billion tonnes of CO2.

As such, the WMO estimates that the Co2 output from its production could increase by 50% by 2030.

40 per cent of the plastic used is single-use
The Plastic Puzzle [The Plastic Puzzle]. (2021). EPSILLON, 2, 28-29

After production or use, plastic takes more than 100 years to degrade. 

Nevertheless, it is usually found in nature where it will continue to pollute. Indeed, ⅓ of plastic is found in nature, and plastic accounts for 85% of the waste found in the oceans.

Adverse effects on human health 

Plastic also has negative effects on our health. Indeed, without knowing it, plastic ends up on our plates and an average person ingests about 300 microparticles per day.

Beyond that, the effects on our health are poorly understood and, above all, poorly understood. 

At present, the studies that have been carried out focus on the effects of specific phases of its life cycle and not on the entire duration of the plastic. 

The main consequence expected is the health crisis that is hiding in plain sight.

The effect of plastic is dangerous to health

The health risks of plastics come mainly from exposure to these particles as well as the chemicals used in their design. 

We come into daily contact with them through inhalation, ingestion or direct skin contact. 

Most often, scientists have observed effects such as immune system damage, reduced olfactory system, cancers, eye and skin irritation, etc.

Can tomorrow's world be plastic-free?

Preserving the environment is now an essential ethical principle for the sustainability of our planet.

While plastic is highly controversial between its benefits, environmental damage and health risks, many have wanted to try to stop using it.

Wood and recycled plastic cutlery

The consequences of stopping plastic

While replacing plastics may seem like a good idea in some areas of activity, in those that are often the most technologically advanced, such as medicine, construction and the automotive industry, it would be a major technological step backwards.

To date, it is not yet possible to achieve comparable performance or improve productivity with different materials. 

However, the Anti-Waste Act regulations will ban all single-use packaging by 2040. 

All the new regulations and the push to reduce plastic consumption will involve efforts from everyone. For example, foodstuffs cannot be kept for as long, it will mean more washing, etc.

Alternatives to plastic

While the complete cessation of plastic seems unthinkable, many are trying to find alternatives to it.

Natural materials

Some materials that are naturally available, i.e. that come from nature and are minimally processed, can be considered a viable alternative.

Many farmers, designers and students have turned to simple and practical solutions. 

These include plastics made from seaweed, bananas, olive seeds and sugar cane.

Alternative technologies

As for the more technological alternatives, some people are turning to materials that were less used or used before the arrival of plastic, such as glass or steel.

On the other hand, some have created bio-plastic. This is a material made of two types. In the first case it can be biodegradable but made from petroleum or from vegetable origin but is not biodegradable.

However, not all of these alternatives are viable and do not replace all of the benefits of plastic. 

Most of the time, plastic substitutes are more expensive, more energy consuming and can also take a long time to decompose.

France recycles 25 per cent of the plastic that is produced in the country.
The Plastic Puzzle [The Plastic Puzzle]. (2021). EPSILLON, 2, 28-29

And in all this, theArche, an acoustic cabin with 0 plastic?

In view of the above, we wanted to participate in this struggle.

Our aim is to be as eco-responsible as possible and to offer quality products.

During the months of research and development, we thought about and selected sustainable and ecological materials.

The main materials used are hemp wool which is bio-sourced, fabric which is recycled and recyclable, steel which is 60% recycled and wood which is PEFC certified.

However, in order to guarantee sound insulation, we are obliged to use rubber. We are currently working on solutions to improve the acoustics of our cabins by finding an alternative to this material. 

If you are interested in our booths, do not hesitate to read the article [How to choose a soundproof booth or phone box for office in 2021] or to see our products directly, click here.

Acoustic booth for making a call or conducting meetings without external intervention.
Installation of a arche D (two seats) at Stanley Robotics

Other commitments

At the same time, we have decided to produce our acoustic cabins in France, more precisely in Auvergne. The materials used are carefully selected and come mainly from France or Europe. 

If you are interested in the subject of made in France, we invite you to read the article [Why produce phone boxes in France].

We have also opted for a zero waste delivery for our phone booths. Our phone booths are transported in reusable covers and not in boxes.

With regard to our greenhouse gas emissions, we are committed to participating in sustainable reforestation projects that care for the biodiversity of French forests.

In addition, we are committed to recycling our cabins to give them a second life.

And if you want to know more about our eco-responsible approach, it's here.

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