Plastic—It is Time to Clean Up

8.3 billion tons—that is how much plastic has been produced worldwide since 1950, half of it in the last 13 years alone. But of all this plastic, only about 30 % is still in use, while the rest has been disposed of. For although 99 % of plastics are produced from the valuable and non-renewable resources of oil, natural gas and coal, plastic has become a cheap disposable product. 95 % of plastic packaging is used only once, after only one month half of the plastic has become waste. Of the approximately 6.3 billion tons of plastic discarded so far, only 9 % has been recycled (mostly downcycling to lower quality products), and 12 % has been incinerated, but 79 % has ended up in landfills or in the environment.


The World Foundation for Natural Science
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