Petroleum-based polymers offer unique strength and versatility. They provide materials for affordable packaging, adhesives, building materials, computer components, and sporting and safety equipment. Durable and stable, these polymers accumulate in the environment. The creation of new plastics that can meet consumer demands without negative ecological and human health consequences is of paramount importance for global society.
Geoffrey Coates, professor of Chemistry & Chemical Biology, is part of a multi-institutional team at the National Science Foundation Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP) that is addressing this challenge.