Props: Gun, Cap, Shades, Tote Bag with bottles, HDPE signs, scotch tape

Characters: 1 Dealer, 1 Crime Lord, 3 Bodyguards, 1 Hostage

[Title screen] (It’s a future in which plastics have been banned, but are prevalent in the black market) Suspicious dealer walking across the frame, carrying tote bag. He walks up to a door, and meets Guard 1 (G1).

G1: You that dealer he’s been talking about?

D: Yeah, let me in.

Dealer tries to move past him, but is stopped by G1.

G1: Whoa whoa, hold up there. You made sure nobody’s following you? (looking around, patting down Dealer)

D: Yes, just let me in.

G1 opens the door. D enters and meets Crime Lord (C)

C: Have you got the goods.

D: Where’s my sibling?

C: Lemme see the goods first.

D goes to table and lays out the goods from the tote bag. It’s a bunch of HDPE.

C: What’s this? Is this HDPE?

D: Yes, didn’t you want to..

C: (bangs table) I TOLD YOU TO BRING ME BIODEGRADABLE PLASTIC! What am I gonna do with this (throws a bottle off the table)?


D: You know what I went through to manufacture this batch of HDPE? Yes, manufacturing plastics is relatively cheap but it produces a large amount of chemical pollutants and fossil fuels will be involved. Manufacturing HDPE involved the use of toxins, like chromium oxide, benzoyl peroxide, hexane, and cyclohexane, which can harm the workers involved.  Some chromium oxide even escaped into a nearby living community.

C: So what? Why do I care?

D: Chromium oxide is cancerous! Plastic manufacturing has always had a negative impact on society. But now that I’ve made this, just accept it and give me back my sibling!

C: (stands up slowly) Do you have any idea how damaging HDPE is to the environment? Did you know that it’s not readily biodegradable? I had a pet turtle when I was 11. It mistook plastic litter as its food. It ended up choking and dying. All because plastic isn’t biodegradable.

D: But what about…

C: Also, plastics don’t biodegrade, but they break down. And when they do, they release toxic additives, like flame retardants, antimicrobials and plasticisers, into the environment. Chlorinated plastics can release harmful chemicals into the soil, which can seep into groundwater and pollute water sources. That’s why I asked specifically for biodegradable plastics.

D: So, what? You’re not gonna give me my sibling back?

C: Gimme a minute. (Crime Lord calls Guards 1 & 2 over for a huddled discussion)

C: Whaddaya think? Should I take the HDPE?

G2: What? HDPE? No way!

G3: Well, you could always recycle the HDPE. Once recycled, it can be made into something you can sell. Not only is it cheaper, it has less of a negative impact to the environment. I mean, it reduces the amount of energy and natural resources consumed in plastic manufacturing.

G2: No way, we had a deal..

C: Shut up, let him talk. Carry on.

G3: Well, back in the day, recycling plastic used to be the thing. Firstly, there’s the benefit of not burning plastics, which releases toxins into the environment. Also, recycling plastic saves landfill space. Imagine if all the plastic litter in the world had been recycled instead. Maybe your turtle wouldn’t have died.

C nods and gestures G3 away. He then turns to D.

C: Looks like you’re in luck. I’ll take the HDPE and let your sibling go. But, you still need to be punished. (hands D a gun)

Hostage: Don’t kill my sibling! NOOOOOOO!

D holds gun to his/her head, we hear a gunshot as the screen blacks out.

Meeting Log #5 – 25 March 2015

Location: Benches outside EEE

Time: 12.30pm

Everyone was present.

We filmed our first video in the School of Biological Sciences yesterday and we completed and finalised it today.

Today, we are going to discuss on our second video and get a rough script out. One suggestion was to make it like a mafia trading in the world where plastic is banned. Somewhat like plastic trafficking.

The name of our video would be Degradation.

Details will be under the Assignment tab.

Things to do during the next meeting:

Finish up the second video shoot.

Team questions session 6 – 18 March 2015

4. Acid deposition is an issue in eastern Canada as many waters and soils here lack natural alkalinity like lime base and hence cannot neutralise acid naturally. Places like Ontario has it worst as their water and soil systems cannot deter the outcomes of high acid deposition.

The 9 largest coal burning states are in Midwest and Ohio River valley which is estimated to contribute to 2/3 of acid rain in Northeast and Eastern Canada.

In 2005, 50-70% of Canada’s acid rain came from the US.


Air. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2015, from

Script for Video One: THE SCIENCE SHOW

Characters: Host, Expert, 3 Audience Members, 1 producer

Host enters to a cheering audience. We see “APPLAUSE” sign held up by producer.

Host: A very good evening and welcome to THE SCIENCE SHOW. This week, we’ll be talking about plastics! Do you guys like plastics?

Audience: YES!!!

Host: Have you ever felt like a plastic bag?

Audience: YES!!

Host: That’s very strange. Without further ado, let’s bring out our expert of the day, Pauly Mer.

Expert walks out and takes a seat.

Host: Welcome to our show. Mr Pauly Mer, lemme ask you, what are polymers?

Expert: Polymers are typically macromolecules, which are derived from petrochemicals. They consist of repeating monomer units, which are strung together to form the larger macromolecule.

Host: Wow. So informative. Anyway, why are some plastics hard, while others are soft. Some are flexible, others rigid?

Expert: Plastics vary in their melting points, elasticity, rigidity, tensile strength and crystallinity, among many other physical and chemical properties.  For example, plastics, in general, are lightweight, although their weights vary significantly from each other.

Host: That’s fantastic. Let’s take a question from the audience. (Randomly points at audience)

Audience 1 walks up to microphone.

A1: OH MY GOSH! I’m so happy to finally meet you! Ok, calm down, calm down. I wanted to ask: What’s your least favourite polymer?

Expert: Well, I really hate High Density Polyethylenes, or HDPEs.

A1: OH MY GOSH! Me too!

Host: Ok, that’s enough, audience member! Go sit down. Ok HDPEs are made up of compact polyethylene macromolecules. Let’s take a look at what that looks like.

Cut to Ethylene Macromolecule.

Host: Look at that nasty little thing. So, how are HDPEs formed?

Expert: (Cut to Ethylene Production video and ) Petroleum is cracked to produce ethylene gas. The ethylene gas molecules are then linked together to form polymers and produce polyethylene. This process is called addition polymerisation, and is conducted under low pressure, with an aluminium-based catalyst.

Host: Now it’s time for another audience question. You! (points to audience)

A2: Um, I was, um, wondering… what makes HDPE so useful?

Expert: [with keywords and host getting bored/ producer asking to speed up/ A2 sleeping/ A1 still being a fan] Well, I hate to say this but HDPE is pretty useful. It has a high density. Because of the absence of branches, the long, linear macromolecules are able to be packed closely to each other. It also has a relatively High Melting Point. Since the macromolecules are packed close together and the intermolecular forces of attraction are much stronger. These stronger forces also give HDPE a higher relative strength. HDPE is rather rigid, due to its regular, close packing, giving it a high tensile strength. HDPE is also chemically inert due to its existence as a stable compound, and since it’s a large macromolecule.

Due to its properties, HDPE plastics are used to make a variety of durable products, including:

  • Frames
  • Ballistic plates
  • Fuel tanks
  • Fireworks
  • Water pipes
  • Hard hats
  • Folding chairs and tables
  • Lunchboxes (Show Buzz Lightyear lunchbox)

Host: Oh, you’re done? Ok great! Well, since you took so long to answer his question, we only have time for one final audience question. You! (points to audience)

A3: Hey, expert, what’s your problem? What’s wrong with HDPE? I love HDPE, okay? In fact, my favourite Buzz Lightyear lunch box is made of HDPE. (Show same Buzz Lightyear lunchbox) What is wrong with HDPE?

Expert: Well, HDPE isn’t biodegradable. In fact, it takes 1000 years for a HDPE plastic bag to dissolve in the environment. The micro-organisms that are responsible for decomposition aren’t able to recognize how to break down a carbon-carbon bond.

A3: Then, why can’t we just manufacture plastics out of peptide bonds?

Expert: Well, it’s simply because peptide bonds have a very short shelf life. So if your lunchbox was made with peptide bonds, you’ll probably only have it for 2 days.

Cut to producer indicating that it’s time to wrap up.

Host: Ok, that’s all the time we have for you, folks! Have a great night and remember to keep recycling.



Meeting Log #4 – 18 March 2015

Location: Benches outside NBS, opposite LT 24

Time: 12pm

Duration: 1.5 hours

A brief meeting before class to finish up on the remaining unfinished part on “Chemical Concept”.  Everyone was present for the meeting.

After which, we went on to discuss about the ideas for our first video. Ideas suggested include: news broadcast (probably more applicable to the second video about implications), talk show style.

We have decided on filming our video as a talk show style. We would need an empty tutorial room for the location, and we will film using Rish’s iPad. The brainstorming session results are as follows:

The talk show will include a host, an expert talking about the chemical concepts, while the rest of our team members will be the audience who are entitled to ask the ‘expert’, questions about certain chemical concepts.

Please refer to our assignments tab for more details.

Things to do before/during the next meeting:

– Finalise the script and start filming

Meeting Log #3 – 11 March 2015

Location: Study area one level down of LKC Lecture Theatre

Time: 12 pm

Duration: 1.5 hours

Met up before class to discuss and fill up our group blog in the “Chemical Concept” and “Implications to Society” pages. Everyone was present for the meeting.

Under “Chemical Concept”, we provided an overview to what polymers are and their properties. We went on to further elaborate about HDPE, which is our topic of discussion. In order to fully understand what HDPE essentially is, we compared its physical and chemical properties to LDPE. In addition, we included the process of how HDPE is formed and certain interesting facts we have found.

Under “Implications to Society”, we provided a background to how HDPE came about and how other forms of plastic can be formed. We also included some of the history to how plastics can be important and how they were used in the past.  Nevertheless, what we need to be aware of would be the current impacts that plastics have on the environment and what other efforts have been in place to alleviate the impacts that plastic has on the environment.

Things to do before/during the next meeting:

– Improve on our blog posts; beautify with visuals or graphics

– Brainstorm and share ideas on the group video