Plastic Bag Pollution Facts

The Bad Boy of Pollution


Number of plastic bags produced

Worldwide, this year

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TheWorldCounts, 15 July, 2014

The Bad Boy of Pollution

Plastic bags are one of the main causes of marine pollution, and the focus on plastic bag reduction is ongoing. Many supermarkets have stopped issuing plastic bags to customers, encouraging them to bring their own bags instead. Since we’ve become so used to the convenience of plastic bags, you may find this change a little bit inconvenient. Before you get pissed off at the supermarket, here’s the reason for this worldwide effort:

  • Plastic doesn’t biodegrade. It’s forever. In the ocean, it breaks down and photo-degrades into little pieces of itself. Plastic sized particles outnumber plankton 6 to 1! It’s mistaken as food by marine animals and kills them.
  • Plastic waste can be found everywhere. In landfills, in the streets, in the ocean. Only 1 to 3% is recycled.
  • Plastic bags, which are made of polythene, causes pollution all its life – from manufacturing to disposal. Its production uses up 8% of our oil resource. Its manufacturing process is harmful to the environment and it remains toxic to the environment after you throw it away.

More: Plastic Waste Facts

  • In the US alone, more than 100 billion plastic bags are used each year – that’s more than 300 bags per person.
  • CLEANSWEEP volunteers in Massachusetts collected 5,712 pounds of plastic bags in one of their cleanup campaigns. It is one of the most common forms of litter.
  • It is estimated that the world uses 500 billion to 1 trillion bags in a year. If they don’t decompose where do they go when you dispose of them?

Why we need to stop using plastic bags

We have become used to plastic bags to carry our stuff around. They’re cheap and handy and readily available. But is it really worth the negative impact to our environment? It seems impossible to totally ban plastic bags altogether. Some people will still use them sometimes. Until we wean ourselves away from plastic bag use, let’s start helping our environment and the animals that are affected by being mindful of how we use them.

Bringing your own reusable bags when shopping will drastically decrease plastic bag pollution. Fewer animals will die. Fewer bags will be produced. Less petroleum will be used. The end result of this small sacrifice on our part is a better and healthier environment for everyone.

More: Interesting Facts about Plastic Bags

Read more stories about our environment at yobet体育官网: Stories. Know the stories behind the numbers and do whatever you can to make our planet a better place for us to live in.

When you help save the planet… you help save lives. This is the only home we know.


  1. Earth Resource Foundation: Campaign against the plastic plague
  2. Environment Massachusetts: Top Ten Facts about Plastic Bags in our Oceans
  3. Reuse It: Facts about the Plastic Bag Pandemic

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Tons of waste from households

Globally, this year

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Tons of waste dumped in oceans

Globally, this year

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US$ income for e-waste worker

So far, this year

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