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Plastic air pollution has captured the world’s consideration and with good cause. Every day, nearly each particular person on the planet will come into contact with plastic. The world’s dependence on a budget, versatile and light-weight materials has led to plastic being launched into the pure atmosphere, inflicting important hurt to wildlife, habitats and human well being.
In Australia, the plastic air pollution disaster has led many state and territory governments to roll out bans on problematic single-use plastics comparable to plastic cutlery, straws, plates and stirrers (the bans don’t apply to medical tools, emergency companies, or individuals who require single-use plastic merchandise attributable to incapacity or for well being and security).
With Plastic Free July simply across the nook, we’ve curated this checklist of Australian plastic waste statistics with the goal of maintaining contributors motivated throughout this month-long plastic-free problem.
Plastic waste in Australia
1. Roughly 3.5 million tonnes of plastic was consumed in Australia in 2018-2019, equal to about 100 kg per particular person. (Australian Government’s National Plastics Plan)
2. Australia makes use of about 70 billion items of ‘scrunchable’ plastics – chip packets, meals wrappers, lolly packets and so forth – annually. (Australian Government’s National Plastics Plan)
3. 84% of plastic used is shipped straight to landfill. (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020)
4. Only 13% of all plastic utilized in Australia is recycled. (National Waste Report 2020)
5. Australians use an estimated one billion cups annually. (abc.net.au 2016)
6. Australians throw out 2.7 million disposable espresso cups each single day. (Sustainability Victoria 2021)
7. Roughly 10 million straws are utilized in Australia daily, roughly 3.5 billion a 12 months. (Clean Up Australia 2020)
8. An estimated seven million plastics utensils are used daily in Australia. (WWF Australia & Boston Consulting Group report 2020)
9. In the 2018-2019 monetary 12 months, solely 9% of plastic waste was despatched for recycling (227,000 tonnes), whereas 84% was despatched to landfill (2.1 tonnes). (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020)
10. Before the plastic bag ban on 1 July 2018, Queensland used an estimated 1 billion plastic baggage annually. (Queensland Government 2021)
11. Australian households had been the biggest contributor of plastic waste, supplying 47% of all plastic waste (1.2 million tonnes). (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020)
12. 32% of plastic waste in Australia was produced from excessive density polyethylene (HDPE). (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020)
13. In 2018-2019, all plastic varieties had the worst restoration charges; solely 15% of all plastics in Australia was recycled, used for power manufacturing or exported. (Australian Bureau of Statistics 2020)
14. It takes Australians one minute to supply a tonne of plastic waste. (War on Waste 2017)
15. Over one billion plastic water bottles are bought in Australia annually. (War on Waste 2018)
16. 2 million Australians stated they consumed extra single-use plastic throughout 2020 than they’d in earlier years as a result of pandemic. (IPSOS and BRITA Market Intelligence Report Australia April 2021)
17. In 2017-2018, NSW consumed 1.1 million tonnes of plastic (primarily packaging and home goods). (NSW Government 2020)
18. Just 10% of the plastic consumed in NSW annually is recycled. (NSW Government 2020)
19. Only 30% of plastic waste recycled in NSW is remanufactured within the state, with the remaining despatched interstate or abroad for reprocessing. (NSW Government 2020)
20. Plastic packaging and single-use plastic gadgets made up over 60% of litter collected in NSW. (NSW Government 2020)
21. An Australian college research estimates every particular person ingests 250 grams of microplastics a 12 months— equal to a bank card’s weight in plastic each week. (University of Newcastle, Dalberg Advisor et al. 2019)
Australia’s marine plastic drawback
22. Over 75% of garbage that litters Australian seashores is manufactured from plastic. (Queensland Government 2021)
23. More than 85% of contamination within the Great Barrier Reef is from microfibres. (Queensland Government 2021)
24. In 2017, greater than 75% of the garbage collected on Western Australian seashores was plastic. (WA Government 2019)
25. Five commonest forms of plastic collected on WA seashores: plastic fragments, cigarette butts and filters, plastic movie remnants (plastic baggage and wrap), plastic meals packaging (wrap, packets and containers) and fishing line. (WA Government 2019)
26. In Australia roughly 130,000 tonnes of plastic leaks into the marine atmosphere yearly. (WWF Australia & Boston Consulting Group report 2020)
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Cover picture by Ron Lach.