WHAT IS THE PLASTIC PROBLEM?
Plastic is an amazing material that plays a positive role in many aspects of our modern life. However, the characteristics that make it such a useful material (its strength and durability in particular) and its chemical properties make it a toxic, hazardous substance that lasts for hundreds of years when it gets into the natural environment.
A few facts and figures:
320+ million tonnes of new plastic are manufactured annually - this figure is increasing.
40% of the plastic produced is for single use packaging.
8.3 billion tonnes of plastic produced since the 1950s. Of which 9% has been recycled, 12% has been burnt and 79% is in the environment as landfill or litter.
8 - 12 million tonnes of plastic enters the ocean annually. Of which 80% washes and blows in from the land.
1+ million seabirds, 100,000+ sea mammals and turtles are killed annually by marine plastic pollution.
Why does it matter?
A healthy ocean is essential to a healthy planet that can support all life, and that includes us. Allowing millions of tonnes of toxic plastic waste to enter the ocean environment threatens the ecosystems that provide 50% of the oxygen we breathe and the primary source of food for 3.5 billion people.
We simply can’t keep producing this amount of plastic or allow any more of it to enter our environment.
Check our calendar of events to find talks, beach cleans from and in conjunction with Plastic Free North Devon.
Find out what you can do and the actions you can take to halt the tide of plastic today.
We rely on volunteers and donations from fantastic businesses and individuals. Find out how you too can support Plastic Free North Devon.