Although plastic is considered an indispensable commodity, plastic pollution is a major concern around the world due to its rapid accumulation rate, complexity, and lack of management. Some political policies, such as the Chinese import ban on plastic waste, force us to think about a long-term solution to eliminate plastic wastes. Converting waste plastics into liquid and gaseous fuels is considered a promising technique to eliminate the harm to the environment and decrease the dependence on fossil fuels, and recycling waste plastic by converting it into monomers is another effective solution to the plastic pollution problem. This paper presents the critical situation of plastic pollution, various methods of plastic depolymerization based on different kinds of polymers defined in the Society of the Plastics Industry (SPI) Resin Identification Coding System, and the opportunities and challenges in the future.
Keywords: plastic depolymerization and recycling; plastic depolymerization challenges; plastic pollution.