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Plastics are choking the world’s oceans. A staggering 21 to 34 billion single-use plastic bottles find yourself in oceans yearly, in accordance with Oceana. To monitor the supply of this plastic air pollution, Break Free From Plastic’s Global Brand Audit Report examines which firms manufacture the bottles.
Its fourth annual model audit brings 1000’s of volunteers collectively throughout the globe to rely and doc the model names on plastic litter. This 12 months, over 11,000 volunteers throughout 45 international locations gathered 330,493 items of plastic. Of these, 58% have been legibly marked with a shopper model.
Which Company Is Creating the Most Plastic Pollution?
The soiled crown goes to Coca-Cola. Sadly, the corporate ranked #1 for the fourth 12 months in a row with a rely of 20,000 merchandise. This is greater than the second and third top-polluting firms mixed. The firm markets 500 manufacturers of drinks and water throughout the globe and manufactured 117 billion single-use plastic bottles in 2018, in accordance with its personal estimates. Yet Coca-Cola says it’s cleansing up its act.
In 2018, Coca-Cola launched its “World Without Waste” marketing campaign and pledged to recycle a used bottle or can for each one the corporate sells by 2030. Although this appears noble, there may be little proof on streets and seashores that the marketing campaign has been profitable to this point.
Coca-Cola has additionally launched a 100% recycled bottle for a few of its merchandise in some North American markets. The transfer will cut back its use of virgin plastic by 20% in comparison with 2018. Although it is a step in the appropriate path, it doesn’t resolve the problem of plastic air pollution. In reality, Greenpeace criticized Coca-Cola after the announcement for not addressing the quickly growing use of single-use plastics.
Who Else Are Major Plastic Polluters?
The different principal culprits are PepsiCo, Unilever, Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, Mondelēz International, Philip Morris International, Danone, Mars, Inc., and Colgate-Palmolive. Pepsi has additionally lately introduced it is going to half the use of virgin plastics throughout all manufacturers and use 50% recycled plastic by 2030. In response, Greenpeace urged Pepsi to reuse or refill bottles and discover options to exchange single-use plastics.
Why Are Single-use Plastics So Harmful?
As the world works to scale back emissions to gradual local weather change, a lot of the main focus is on power. Although this work is crucial, the influence of plastic on the local weather disaster is basically going unnoticed. The unhappy actuality is that plastic fuels the local weather disaster and that 99% of plastic is made out of fossil fuels.
Plastic is a crucial driver in local weather change, which the report mentions repeatedly. Petrochemicals, the kind of fossil fuels made into plastic, account for 14% of oil use. The manufacturing of plastics may be very polluting, particularly within the refining course of. Also, plastic air pollution is disproportionately impacting low-income communities, communities of shade, and youth.
Break Free From Plastics is looking on prime polluters to reinvent their enterprise fashions for a cleaner world. It doesn’t imagine that voluntary company pledges have confirmed adequate in resolving the plastic pollution crisis and calls on governments to carry firms accountable.
Are We on Track To Reduce Plastic Pollution Globally?
According to the Global Brand Audit Report, plastic manufacturing is predicted to double within the subsequent 20 years if left unchecked. The challenge has come underneath appreciable public scrutiny in recent times. According to a 2019 study by Shelton Group, 65% of respondents mentioned they have been very or extraordinarily involved about plastic in the oceans.
Yet, the actions of firms — and authorities insurance policies to carry them accountable — have been feeble in comparison with the size of the problem and public outcry.
How Can Individuals Help Lessen Plastic Pollution?
Avoid merchandise with plastic packaging and go for reusable and refillable packing when doable. Whenever doable, keep away from consuming bottled water and seek clean sources of tap water as an alternative. If water high quality is a priority, use a non-plastic water filter to take away pollution. Some companies will even permit patrons to make use of reusable cups at soda fountains.
Communicate to firms, telling them you need them to scale back plastic air pollution and displaying your assist for phasing out single-use plastics. Also, assist native, state, and federal insurance policies that hold companies responsible for his or her air pollution or cut back plastic waste. For instance, specialists imagine that bottle deposits improve recycling charges within the states which have them.
When you do devour plastic bottles, ensure to recycle them. Use the Earth911 recycling locator to find out about recycling choices in your space.