Dangers of Plastic Bags

Dangers of Plastic Bags

Single-use bags, both paper and plastic, represent a huge threat to the environment. This threat is not only related to the sheer volume of them ending up in landfill, but also to the resources needed to produce, transport and (occasionally) recycle them, and the emissions resulting from these processes. Single-use plastic bags are also well known bfor their interference in ecosystems and the part they play in flood events, where they clog pipes and drains.

Envirosax presents a fashionable and practical solution to the problem of disposable plastic bags (each Envirosax potentially replaces the use of 6,000 bags during its lifetime), so please make a move in the right direction and help to reduce the impact of plastic bag waste worldwide by buying a reusable bag today!

Plastic Bag Facts

  • We use 5 trillion plastic bags per year on planet Earth! That’s 160,000 plastic bags a second! And over 700 a year for every single person walking on Earth. We can do better than this.

  • Approx. 380 billion plastic bags are used in the United States every year. That’s more than 1,200 bags per US resident, per year. Approx. 100 billion of the 380 billion are plastic shopping bags.

  • An estimated 12 million barrels of oil is required to make that many plastic bags. Only 3-5% of plastic bags in the USA end up getting recycled.

  • Australian consumers use about 3.92 billion plastic bags each year. That’s over 160 plastic bags per person, per year.

  • Australians use 130kg of plastic per person per year. Only 9% of that is recycled. More frightening still, up to 130,000 tonnes of plastic will find it’s way into our waterways and into the ocean.

  • Thousands of marine animals and more than 1 million birds die each year as a result of plastic pollution.

  • The United Nations Environment Programme estimates that there are 46,000 pieces of plastic litter floating in every square mile of ocean.

 

  • Plastic bags are often mistakenly ingested by animals, clogging their intestines which results in death by starvation. Other animals or birds become entangled in plastic bags and drown or can’t fly as a result.

 

  • Even when they photo-degrade in landfill, the plastic from single-use bags never goes away, and toxic particles can enter the food chain when they are ingested by unsuspecting animals.

 

  • Greenpeace says that at least 267 marine species are known to have suffered from getting entangled in or ingesting marine debris. Nearly 90% of that debris is plastic.

 

  • Although sometimes considered a more sustainable option, paper bags still provide a great threat to biodiversity and the polution of our enviroment.

 

  •  Americans consume more than 10 billion paper bags per year. Approximately 14 million trees are cut down every year for paper bag production. This causes deforestation which disrupts the water cycle and carbon cycle, loss of biodiversity, soil erosion and effects water quality.

 

  • Most of the pulp used for paper shopping bags is virgin pulp, as it is considered stronger.

 

  • Paper production requires hundreds of thousands of gallons of water as well as toxic chemicals like sulphurous acid, which can lead to acid rain and water pollution.

 

Sources: OceanCrusaders, Ecowatch