Plastic Bag facts

February 19th, 2008 by Rosie

One hundred thousand animals die each year from plastic. After an animal dies from ingesting plastic the body decomposes and the plastic is then released back into the environment to kill another animal.

46,000 pieces of plastic debris floats on or just below the surface of every square mile of the world’s oceans.

47% of wind borne litter that escapes from landfill is plastic, and the majority of that is plastic bags.

It takes 500 years for a plastic bag to decay in landfill.

UK consumers use an estimated 10 billion plastic bags a year – that’s 167 per person according to DEFRA –

1 trillion plastic bags used worldwide every year. That is:

* 1 million every minute

* enough to carpet the entire planet every 6 months.

Guernsey uses over 10 million plastic bags per year.

British Retailers spend £64 to £80 million yearly on providing free plastic bags to customers.

Cutting plastic bag usage in Britain by just a quarter would reduce CO2 emissions by as much as 63 tons a year – equivalent to taking 18,000 cars off the road.

During Beachwatch 2006, 7,476 plastic bags were found on 358 beaches; an average of 40 bags / km.

0.5: the percentage of plastic bags returned for recycling in the UK.

90% of plastic ever made still exists today

Plastic bags are used on average for 20 minutes.

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