Plastic Bags

 

Plastic bags are popular because they are cheap, strong, lightweight, and convenient. However, not only do they end up in landfills after use, but also affect the ecosystem.

Facts:

  • Plastic bags are made of polyethylene, a pretroluem product that contributes to air and energy pollution.
  • 4-5 Trillion Plastic Bags are made a year, 4-5% of which are recycled.
  • Approximately 380 Billion Plastic Bags are used in the US annually; Average 1,200 per resident.
  • California uses 19 billion plastic bags; $25 million goes towards putting them in a landfill.
  • Approximately 12 million barrels of oil are used to make US plastic bags.
  • UN estimates 46,000 pieces of plastic litter floating in every ocean square mile.
  • 1 Billion seabirds and mammals die from plastic bags a year.
  • When animals eat plastic bags, they clog their intestines and die of starvation.
  • Plastic bags don’t biodegrade.
  • 25% of plastic bags are made in Asia; fossil fuels are used to transport them.

 

  • Ireland began taxing plastic use in 2002; which decreased use by 95%,
  • Recycling plastic saves twice as much energy as burning it in an incinerator.
  • Recycled plastic can be used to make things like benches and parks.
  • Best alternative solution: Use a biodegradable and re-usable plastic tote bag!