Have you ever seen the 1967 movie, “The Graduate,” where actor Dustin Hoffman, in the role of a young graduate, gets sage advice as to what field he should get into? “Plastics,” young man, is the future was the recommendation. But where do plastics originate? Plastics are characterized as polymers. Polymers are long-chained monomers. Some examples of monomers are ethylene and propylene. When these monomers are polymerized they become polyethylene and polypropylene. From where do these monomers originate? They are products from oil and gas production.
The current crop of Democratic Party presidential wannabees have drunk the Green New Deal (GND) Kool-Aid. Stop fracking! Stop oil and gas production on federal lands! Ban offshore oil and gas production! Most of these “rocket scientists” come from states that import their refined products for transportation fuels and heating oil. They do not want any of those stinking oil refineries in their backyards but please continue to import the gasoline and diesel from refineries in the Virgin Islands or from Venezuelan-owned refineries. So where do we get plastics if oil and gas production ceases? Technology exists to convert coal into hydrocarbons but it is energy-intensive and very expensive. By the way, that technology was developed to further Hitler’s Nazi putsch to conquer the world. So do we return to a world of “Before Plastics”?
Here is a little table of just a few plastic items we use and the kinds of items that could replace them if the proponents of the GND were successful: