Did you know that chewing gum is made from synthetic rubber…which is plastic?

An article written by Jessica A. Knoblauch for Environmental Health News, says the amount of plastic manufactured in the first ten years of this century eclipses the total produced in the entire last century.

Let’s face it. We can’t live without it. Plastic has made our lives easier. It’s versatility is vast. Spanning many industries from computers to medicine and more.

The following excerpt is taken from https://www.plasticoceans.org/the-facts/

The proliferation of plastic products in the last 70 years or so has been extraordinary; We are now producing nearly 300 million tons of plastic every year, half of which is for single use. More than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped into our oceans every year.

Plastic is cheap and incredibly versatile with properties that make it ideal for many applications. However, these qualities have also resulted in it becoming an environmental issue. We have developed a “disposable” lifestyle and estimates are that around 50% of plastic is used just once and thrown away.

Plastic is a valuable resource and plastic pollution is an unnecessary and unsustainable waste of that resource.

  • Packaging is the largest end use market segment accounting for just over 40% of total plastic usage.
  • Annually approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide. More than one million bags are used every minute.
  • A plastic bag has an average “working life” of 15 minutes.
  • Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.

These facts are staggering. It’s no wonder we just want to look away. But you can do something about it. You can donate to causes like these, and you can also make changes in your own life—and they are easy when eco options are available to you.

Plastic Oceans has this infographic that can help you get started too. This site is also loaded with lots of useful information on taking action and getting involved.

Meghan Thomas