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Plastic Bags- gone or not?

Submitted by Becky Wei

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“How many plastic bags do we use per year?”

Nowadays, many of us are using reusable shopping bags instead of plastic bags. But there are still lot of people around the world using plastic bags everyday. Can you imagine how many plastic we still use every year? I suppose the number will surprise you.

Scientists estimate that about 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed worldwide each year. That’s over 1,000,000 plastic bags used per minute!

According to the Worldwatch Institute’s State of the World report, 4 to 5 trillion plastic bags—including large trash bags, thick shopping bags, and thin grocery bags—were produced globally last year. Roughly 80% of those bags were used in North America and Western Europe. Every year, Americans reportedly throw away 100 billion plastic grocery bags.

Americans use and dispose 100 billion plastic shopping bags each year, and at least 12 million barrels of oil are used each year in order to manufacture plastic bags. Sadly, the plastic grocery bags recycling rate is less than 5 percent.

Since pollution is still a serious problem, we can try to resolve it by being smart with our plastic bags.

-Don’t be lazy to bring your own reusable grocery bag before you go shopping!

-Try to use less plastic bags for vegetables in the supermarket.

-Reusing or “recycling” the plastic bags at your home. (Use as the garbage bag liners, take them to the local park or dog park and donate them. “Recycling” because you can’t throw it in the recycle bin.)

-If you feel extremely passionate about this topic, and you’d like to do all you can, then you can make a statistic of a monthly or annually plastic bags using amount.

 

Statistic data citation:http://www.inspirationgreen.com/plastic-bag-stats.html

About Cindy Guo

Cindy is senior at Henry M. Gunn High School and is incredibly honored to be a part of the Rising Star Magazine team. She enjoys belting out Disney songs, playing piano, watching Chinese dramas, and babysitting. Cindy serves as California DECA's VP of Silicon Valley and is also the singing teacher at FCSN and the President of HEARTS Nonprofit. She can be contacted at cindy@risingstarmagazine.com

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