Plastic is everywhere, and it has become a massive problem for our economy, our environment, and our future.
Let me prove my point real quick, as if I even need to.
Check out this fact sheet from the 2018 Earth Day that shows us some scary statistics regarding just how much plastic we use on a regular basis.
Have you ever heard of the great pacific garbage patch?
It's basically a massive circular current in the pacific ocean that's twice the size of Texas, where floating debris and garbage has collected due to the circular flow of oceanic currents.
Here are some more facts regarding the great garbage patches that exist in our oceans.
As you can see from the image above, the great pacific garbage patch is just one of multiple circular currents where trash collects.
This is a major problem for sea life, because many animals cannot distinguish between real food and garbage. Especially tiny pieces of trash like cigarettes, beads, string, styrofoam, and other stuff.
For instance, over 13 lbs of trash found in the stomach of a dead sperm whales stomach. This article on National Geographic breaks down exactly what was found.
Did you know that over 7 billion lbs of non-recyclable plastic is produced every year? Check out this list of non-recyclable products.
According to the EPA, "In 2013, Americans generated about 254 million tons of trash and recycled and composted about 87 million tons of this material, equivalent to a 34.3 percent recycling rate. On average, we recycled and composted 1.51 pounds of our individual waste generation of 4.40 pounds per person per day"
Here is a breakdown of the types of trash that we produce on a daily basis.
So what can we do about all of this waste? How can we reduce the size of these garbage patches and what creative solutions have we found to deal with it?
The Ocean Cleanup has a few awesome strategies for starting this massive effort.
Apart from cleaning up, what are ways that we can reuse plastics in a way that benefits us all? Check out this video on plastic streets that have been developed!
Here is another article on some ways that we can reuse some of these non-recyclable plastics at home!
What about plastic bags? Did you know that an astonishing 2 million plastic bags are used every minute of every day? That's over a trillion single use plastic bags every year!
How can we reduce, reuse, or recycle single use plastic bags? This article provides us with 60 ways we can reuse plastic bags!
Overall, plastic represents one of the worlds biggest problems when it comes to waste disposal and recycling.
If we focus our efforts on reducing our consumption of plastic, reusing the plastic we have, or recycling what we have already used, we can directly contribute to the betterment of our world.
Thanks for reading!