Packaging was the dominant use of primary plastics, with 42 percent of plastics entering the use phase.6. In 2017 it implemented a much stricter, permanent ban on non-industrial plastic imports.74 In the chart we see the estimated impact on the cumulative displacement of global plastic waste to 2030 as a result of the Chinese import ban.75 This is shown for three scenarios: assuming the maintained 100 percent import ban, in addition to the impact if this was reduced to 75 or 50 percent. Mismanaged waste is the sum of inadequately managed waste (that which is not formally managed such as disposal in dumps or open, uncontrolled landfills which could leak to the surrounding environment) and littered waste. Plastics are a rapidly growing segment of municipal solid waste (MSW). Ingestion of plastics can have multiple impacts on organism health. & Gorokhova, E. The effects of natural and anthropogenic microparticles on individual fitness in Daphnia magna. There has been no evidence of harmful effects to date – however, the precautionary principle would indicate that this is not evidence against taking exposure seriously. 91 Percent of Plastic Is Not RecycledMany people don’t find an issue with their plastic use because … The reported land area of Spain is approximately 500,000 square kilometres, and Alaska is an estimated 1.5 million square kilometres. Plastic resins are also used in a variety of container and packaging products, such as PET beverage bottles, HDPE bottles for milk and water, and a wide variety of other resin types used in other plastic containers, bags, sacks, wraps and lids. However, authors were still surprised by the quantity of plastic accumulation in Southern oceans — while it was lower than in the Northern Hemisphere, it was still of the same order of magnitude. (2013). When citing this entry, please also cite the underlying data sources. e 2% waste growth over the past decade, local households were still the largest generators of plastic waste in Hong Kong, taking up 62% of the total in 2015. In 2018, plastics generation was 35.7 million tons in the United States, which was 12.2 percent of MSW generation. They wanted to understand where plastic accumulates, and how old it is: a few years old, ten years or decades? Evidence that the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is rapidly accumulating plastic. A global map of littered plastic from coastal populations (within 50 kilometres of a coastline) is shown here. This stopped, however, in 2013 when China starte… Collectively, China and Hong Kong have imported 72.4 percent of global traded plastic waste (with most imports to Hong Kong eventually reaching China).72, This came to an end in 2017. A number of organisms, including suspension-feeders (for example, oyster larvae, urchin larvae, European flat oysters, Pacific oysters) and detritivorous (for example, isopods, amphipods) invertebrates show no impact of microplastics.54 Overall, however, it’s likely that for some organisms, the presence of microplastic particles in the gut (where food should be) can have negative biological impacts. As we see, Hong Kong typically acts as an entry point for Chinese imports; it is therefore the largest ‘exporting’ country to China. Over 2 million tonnes of plastic packaging are used in the UK each year. Liebezeit, G., & Liebezeit, E. (2013). Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0025326X16305380. Springer, Cham. Levels of microplastic ingestion are currently unknown. High-income countries, including most of Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea have very effective waste management infrastructure and systems; this means discarded plastic waste (even that which is not recycled or incinerated) is stored in secure, closed landfills. Plastic waste facts show that every day almost 8 million pieces of plastic pollute our oceans. The short downturn in annual production in 2009 and 2010 was predominantly the result of the 2008 global financial crisis — a similar dent is seen across several metrics of resource production and consumption, including energy. These Facts and Figures are current through calendar year 2015. … How much plastic has the world produced cumulatively? Rochman, C. M., Browne, M. A., Underwood, A. J., Van Franeker, J. Note that whilst this data is available only for the year 2010, projections of global trends for the year 2025 (discussed in the section below) show a very similar distribution. We have many decades of legacy waste to contend with. What determines how much plastic waste we produce? Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0045653517311724. Atmos. Available at: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-22939-w. Cressey, D. (2016). (2015) attempted to quantify the amount of plastic that could eventually enter the ocean across the world.9. This makes it at risk of leakage and transport to the natural environment and oceans via waterways, winds and tides. The plastic food service items are generally made of clear or foamed polystyrene, while trash bags are made of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) or low-density polyethylene (LDPE). Over the next 65 years, annual production of plastics increased nearly 200-fold to 381 million tonnes in 2015. This data is available to explore on a per capita basis and on an absolute basis (in tonnes per country). Rist, S. E. et al. In addition to this main data entry we have collated some of the most common questions on plastics on our FAQ on Plastics page. How much of ocean plastics come from land and marine sources? One key input is through river systems. Watts, A. J. R., Urbina, M. A., Corr, S., Lewis, C. & Galloway, T. S. Ingestion of plastic microfibers by the crab Carcinus maenas and its effect on food consumption and energy balance. This web page contains material-specific information and data on plastics. The first synthetic plastic — Bakelite  — was produced in 1907, marking the beginning of the global plastics industry. Overall we see that the global distribution is projected to change only slightly; whilst China’s contribution falls by a couple of percentage points, East Asia & Pacific maintain around 60 percent of the total. Eriksen, M., Lebreton, L. C., Carson, H. S., Thiel, M., Moore, C. J., Borerro, J. C., … & Reisser, J. An analysis by Rochman et al. 300 million tons of plastic is created every year, which weighs the same as the worlds population, yet just 50% is single use. With the largest population, China produced the largest quantity of plastic, at nearly 60 million tonnes. PLoS ONE 11, e0155063 (2016). Welden, N. A. C. & Cowie, P. R. Environment and gut morphology influence microplastic retention in langoustine, Nephrops norvegicus. 17. Plastics—the Facts is an analysis of the data related to the production, demand and waste management of plastic materials. Over this period, China imported between 7 and 9 million tonnes of plastic waste per year. Available at: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/347/6223/768. In: Bergmann M., Gutow L., Klages M. (eds) Marine Anthropogenic Litter. Güven, O., Gökdağ, K., Jovanović, B., & Kıdeyş, A. E. (2017). PloS one, 9(12), e111913. 19. The chart shows the increase of global plastic production, measured in tonnes per year, from 1950 through to 2015. 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plastic waste statistics

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