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June 03, 1975 - Image 4

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Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1975-06-03

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The Michigan Daily
Edited and managed by Students at the
University o Michigan
Tuesday, June 3, 1975
News Phone: 764-0552
PCP: Devil in disguise
SUMMER IN ANN ARBOR has always been a time of
high spirits, green grass, short lines, and generally
relaxed good times. Unfortunately, the relaxed atmos-
phere lulls some people into an attitude of unlimited
trust that can't always be justified.
With the arrival of warm weather, drug dealers will
hawk their wares in quantity on the Diag and at the
outdoor concerts. and not always with their customers'
best interest in mind.
The greatest headache for local drug counsellors
this year has been caused by PCP, a powerful horse tran-
quilizer being nased off as THC, the active ingredient
In cannabis. Actually, there is no such thing as pure
THC.
Those careless enough to accept an offer of THC or
"Chrystal TH" could end up paying the price in total
body numbness and uncomfortable hallucinations. Let
the buyer beware.
Editorial Staff
JEFF SORENSON
PAUL HASKINS
Editorialet o r

Hard impact of soft bottles

By JONATHAN EPSTEIN
iN A MATTER of weeks, mil-
lions of American consum-
ers wil have an opportunity to
significantly modify both their
drinking routines and the en-
vironment. The Coca-Cola Cor-
poration is on the verge of in-
troducing a resealable no-de-
posit no-return plastic pop bot-
tle in a major eastern market
area. The nitrile resin bottle
was developed by Monsanto
Corporation and has been suc-
cessfully test marketed since
19-'0. Pepsico in conjunction
with DuPont has also developed
a plastic pop bottle ' which is
currently being test marketed
in three counties of upstate New
York.
Coca-Cola and Pepsico con-
tend that a major advantage of
the plastic bottle is its safety
for constmer use. The average
break height for Monsanto's
ten-ounce container is .seven
feet; if the bottle does break,
the few fragments produced
tend to have flexible edges. An
FDA draft environmental im-
pact statement on plastic bot-
tIes concludes, "the anticipated
injury rate is almost negligible
when compared to glass."
HOWEVER, the FDA study
did note that the negative ecol-
ogical effects of plastic p c p
bottles will be substantial. Due
to their lightweight, plastic
"sJiosna5rto,"., .T"J-YV. .". ,"
:4v." "\ .:. "t\:A.i."" t w t f:r"..:1"...

rat times the energy required cover empty bottles. Monsaato
to refill a glass bottle. placed the trademark "Cycle.
Another disadvantage is that Safe" on its bottle to stress xe-
chemicals refined from petro- cycling potential, and plans to
leum constitute the bulk of the pay a minimum of $250 per ton
resin used in plastic bottle pro- for the empties, which will be
duction. In the event of a short melted down and used in the
term oil crisis, petrochemical production of new "Cycla-Safe"
supplies will be severely hlait- containers. Monsanto claims
ed. On a long term oasis. oil is that its recycled bottle ac.cally
likely to be in tight supply while involves less ecergy consump-
the raw materials used in glass tion than a refillable glass bot-
manufacturing, such as sand tie. It should be noted, how-
and limestone, are still abun- ever, that if consumers do not
dant. bring their bottles to the recy
cling centers, Monsanto's con-
DESPITE THE litter and en- tainers will contribute little and
: " .:ti srwsr ,: s .s :'.'w::.a:.;.as'ss-o;, consume unwarranted amounts
ofenergy as do one-wdy bottles
f fn ia nlinli* and harfi- and cans.

teria, plastic bottle decompose very slowly."
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DAVID BLOMQUIST ..
JEFF RISTINE ...
TIM sCHICTG
BILL TURQUE ...
BETH NISSEN .
ANN MARIE LIPINSKI.
SUE ADES.....
ELAINE FLETCHER .. .
CATHERINE REUTTER
ROB MEACHUM. JO MARCOTTY

......NightEaten,
....... Night Editor
.Night Editor
..... NgtEditor
Night Editor
Editorial Page Ass't.
As't. Night Editor
Ass't. Night Editor
Asst. Night Editor
As..t. Night Editor
.....Suplement

bottles float longer than other
kinds of soft drink containers
thrown into rivers and lakes.
Chemically resistant to sunlight
and bacteria, plastic bottles de-
compose very slowly.
Like all one-way botis and
cans, plastic no-return pop bot-
tles place far greater energy
demands on the environment
than refilable glass bottles, for
the energy expended in produc-
ing a new plastic bottle is sev-

Sports Editors:
Bill Crane Al Hrapsky
Night Editors:
Jon Chavez
Contributing Editors:
John Kahler Clarke Cogsditi
YOU UNIVERSITY RESEARCHERS
SHOULD CONFINE YOUR EFFORTS
TO SUBJECTS AND RESULTS
THAT CAN BE UNDERSTOOD BY
SENATORS.

ergy problems expected t, stem
from widespread use of plastic
pop bottles, the Food anl Drug
Administration okayed produc-
tion of plastic bottles by several
chemical companies. Eugene
Spivak, FDA Chief Investigator
of the Detroit district, staces the
"only interest" his agency had
in the matter was to make sure
the chemical components of the
plastic resin did not migrate in-
to the contents of the contaier.
Several environmenal groups,
however, feel that the jurisdic-
tion of the Food and Drug Ad-
ministration is not solely limit-
ed to the 1906 Food, Drug, and
Cosmetic Act.

PAT TAYLOR, a staff nien-
ber of Environmental Actios in
Washington D.C., feels t h a t
Monsanto's recycling program
is nothing more than a "public
relations gimmick." Because of
consumer reluctance in past
recycling efforts, the F 1 A
draft environmental impact
statement also concluded t h at
"plastic barrier bottles are un-
likely to be recycled in signifi-
cant quantities."
Monsanto plans to introduce a
refillable plastic bottle in about
two years. John White, a spokes-
man for Coca-Cola, said that
his firm's use of Monsanto's re-
fillable bottle will depend on
consumer demand. According to

IF YOU CAN'T COMMUNICATE
WHAT YOU FIND OUT, THEN
FORGET ITI

"But in all probability, the American con-
sumer will continue to pay a few pennies extra
for a no-deposit no-return bottle rather than
be bothered by returnables."

BY THE WAY, WHAT
TIME IS IT?
afifil~ 2.. ..5\

The Environmental Defense
Fund has recently filed .s u i t
against the FDA, contending
that the National Environment-
al Police Act of 1969requires the
agency to consider ecological
factors in their decision-making
process.
FDA Commissioner Alexand-
er M. Schmidt believes that if
his agency had considered the
ecological consequences of the
plastic pop bottle, it "would be
an arbitrary and challengeable
assumption of authority."
EVEN IF THE Food and
Drug Administration emphasiz-
ed environmental factors in its
decision-making process, t h e
agency still might have auoprov-
ed plastic bottle production; at
least one of the producers is
contending that its plastic bot-
tle will help alleviate litter and
energy problems.
James Abrams, a public rela-
ions official at Monsanto, ctates
that as soon as Coca-Cola intro-
duces Monsanto's "Cycle-Safe,,"
pop bottle, his firm wdll estab-
lish a recycling network to re-

the National Soft Drinks As-
sociation, returnable bottles had
an 82.3 per cent share of the
market in 1965, dwindling to
37.3 per cent in 1972.
Since the weight of the pastiC
pop bottle is only a fraction of
that of glass bottles, consumers
might find buying and return
ing plastic refillable bottles less
disagreeable.
BUT, IN ALL probability, the
American consumer will contis
ue to pay a few pennies extra
for a no-deposit no-return bottle
rather than be bothered by re
turnables. And unless the com
sumer undergoes a rapid change
in consciousness, or faces a got-
ernment-imposed deposit tax,
the plastic pop containers pro-
duced by Monsanto CorporatitO
and the rest of the chemical
industry will not be recycled 0r
refilled in any significant num-
ber.
Jonathan Epstein is
senior economics major in
LSA.

JOUR I NISAL

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