Can Superworms or Mealworms Actually Break Down Plastic Styrofoam in Our Landfills?


This is the Superworm, or otherwise, Zophobas morio. They're just a tad bit bigger than a penny and yet this could be the solution to all of our plastic Styrofoam trash. When studies showed that these superworms as well as a different species called mealworms had the ability to not only eat Styrofoam but to also be able to break it down it the process, I needed to look into this. Usually, breaking down plastic like Styrofoam would take hundreds of years. But these superworms or mealworms allowed this process to be shortened to just a few days. After doing some research, I finally learned why.


See, the superworms or mealworms can't break this Styrofoam down on their own. They have to get help from a type of bacteria in their gut, which breaks down this Styrofoam so that it's edible. Because of the bacteria in their stomach, they are able to break down Styrofoam so that it can be digested. I also found that this produces very little greenhouse gases such has carbon dioxide. Researchers at Stanford and Harvard have been saying that this could be the next big thing to solve our huge waste problem. What do you think? Leave a comment below!

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