Although plastic bags make up only a small percentage of all litter, the impact of these bags is nevertheless significant. Plastic bags create visual pollution problems and can have harmful effects on aquatic and terrestrial animals. Plastic bags are particularly noticeable components of the litter stream due to their size and they can take a long time to fully break down.
Plastic bags are everywhere, and while they are convenient, they cause significant environmental damage all over the world. Every year Australians consume more than 4 billion supermarket plastic bags. Of these, just 3 per cent are recycled and the rest end up in our environment or in landfill.
Plastic Bag Facts
So called ‘biodegradable’bags actually cause greater widespread pollution than regular plastic bags
Australians currently use 4 billion plastic bags annually,which means over 10 million new bags are used every day, or that we each use 200 each year
The energy consumed in the life cycle of one plastic bag is estimated to be equivalent to 13.8 millilitres of crude oil
Australians throw away about 7,150 recyclable plastic bags a minute, with 429.000 recyclable plastic supermarket bags dumped into landfill every hour
Plastic bags can become serial killers. Once a bag is ingested, the animal dies and decomposes, releasing the bag back into the environment to kill again.
5 Things You Can Do
1. Stay informed about our plastic world and environmental toxins.
2. Reduce your use of one-time, single use plastics.
3. Conduct your own personal trash audit.
4. Creatively reuse and repurpose your plastic products.
5. Refuse to use plastic shopping bags, take your own bags and support recycling programs.