Fifteen Facts you Should Know About Plastic
The first step to take action in your own life to reduce plastic, is to understand that plastic is incompatible with the idea of a circular economy, pollutes the environment and seriously threatens marine life. You can find in this article fifteen facts you should know about plastic.
Is plastic recyclable?
- Plastics cannot be infinitely recycled because of their complex composition and of additives.
- Even, the easiest recyclable plastic, PET, can optimally be recycled once.
- “100% recycled” is a myth: several bottles are downcycled to produce one PET bottle and recycled plastics are mixed with new plastics to produce that bottle.
- Recycle logos are misleading: they don’t mean that the product will be recycled but that “the producer has made a financial contribution towards the recovery and recycling of packaging”.
What is the end of life of plastics?
- Of all the plastic that has ever existed, more than half was produced in the last 15 years.
- 91% of the plastic produced has never been recycled.
- According to Break Free From Plastic:
- 32% of plastic packaging ends up littering the environment,
- 40% are in landfills somewhere,
- 14% incinerated,
- 14% recycled (i.e. downcycled)…
…BUT IN REALITY ONLY 2% ARE EFFECTIVELY RECYCLED.
How plastics damage marine life?
- 51 trillion microplastic particles litter oceans and seas.
- Every year, 12 million tones of plastic enter the ocean.
- 1 million sea birds, 100,000 sea mammals, marine turtles and countless fish are killed.
- 40% of marine mammals and 44% of seabird species are affected by marine debris ingestion.
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