Most of the Plastic in the Ocean Comes From Just Five Countries

It is estimated that our oceans currently hold 268,940 metric tons of plastic waste and eight million tons of plastic waste enter the ocean every year.

This pollution not only has an effect on the environment and the economy, but leads to hazardous conditions for all sea life. Thousands upon thousands of birds, turtles, seals and other marine mammals are killed each year from ingesting plastic or getting entangled in it.

In the Los Angeles area alone, 10 metric tons of plastic fragments (such as grocery bags, straws, cups and bottles) are carried out into the pacific everyday.

While this number is staggering, research published this year states that China, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam account for 60% of all plastic wastes entering the ocean. This largely due to a surge in economic growth, without the infrastructure in place to deal with the fallout.

A new report from the Ocean Conservancy and McKinsey Center for Business and Environment, states that if these five countries could reduce their plastic leakage by 65% it would then cut the global leakage to 45% by 2025.

By properly managing waste, such as expanding garbage services, using more garbage for energy generation, and diverting more high-value plastic from the waste-stream, it wouldn’t be hard.
“Concerted action in the form of a $5 billion annual ramp-up in waste-management spending could create a vibrant secondary resource market, trigger investment in packaging and recovery systems, and let the ocean thrive.”



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