What are the Biggest Issues with Plastic Sustainability?
Plastic waste, greenwashing, landfills, burning, wishcycling, microplastics… the list goes on when it comes to the many issues surrounding plastic sustainability. While plastic products have become an integral and necessary part of our lives, they continue to cause problems for the environment due to their unsustainable nature. Since we won’t be abandoning plastic products anytime soon, we need to shift our focus to the major issues surrounding plastic sustainability to see how we can address and solve them. As a team of experts in plastic waste that strive to make plastic a sustainable commodity, Change Plastic for Good knows how important awareness is when trying to create solutions. That is why we have compiled some information to help you understand what the biggest issues with plastic sustainability are and why these issues matter.
3 Pressing Issues with Plastic Sustainability
When discussing plastic sustainability, the following issues are the most dangerous and pressing:
1. Recycling is Not Enough
While recycling is an initiative with the best of intentions, it is unfortunately not enough to stop the ever-growing production of plastic waste around the world. This is largely due to human error, as It is estimated that less than 10% of all plastic is properly recycled by consumers. To put this in perspective, 90 of every 100 plastic products end up in garbage bins and landfills, spending hundreds of years there before finally breaking down. In addition to human error, recycling is surprisingly expensive as it costs millions of dollars to build and operate a single recycling facility and produce recycled plastic products. That is why many companies opt to create brand-new plastic products instead, further increasing plastic production and waste.
Also known as “green sheen”, greenwashing is a deceptive form of marketing that is used by various companies and corporations to persuade the public that their products, aims, and policies are environmentally friendly. Most companies utilize these strategies to distance themselves from the environmental lapses of their suppliers and competitors. While greenwashing is not new by any means, it has become more prominent in recent years to meet the consumer demand for environmentally friendly goods and services. An example of greenwashing can be found on plastic water bottles as they are often covered with trees and mountains to evoke images of nature and organic materials, diverting attention away from the harm these bottles cause to the environment.
3. Plastic Production Trends
Despite the threat plastic poses to the environment, the production of plastic products continues to increase at an alarming rate to meet the ever-growing demand from consumers. When you combine this with the fact that nearly 40% of all plastic products are designed for a single use (plastic bags, straws, packaging, etc.), it is easy to see how plastic will continue to pile up around the world. If companies are going to continue to produce plastic products, they will need to start adding BDP® or other organic ingredients to plastic to accelerate their degradation and prevent them from spending hundreds of years occupying space in a landfill.
To learn more about plastic sustainability, BDP®, or greenwashing, get in touch with the team at Change Plastic for Good. We can be reached through our online contact form and will be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding BDP® or the movement to make plastic completely sustainable.