Published: 19th July 2021
#ThrowbackToday: Why Earth could very well be dubbed the 'Plastic Planet'
In today's #TBT, we recall an arduous research that came to this searing conclusion — since 2015, human beings have produced over 8.3 billion tons of plastic and this is where it is all really going
The number is 8.3 billion tons.
That's how much plastic humans had managed to produce by 2015. This conclusion was reached after a global assessment, a first of its kind, undertaken by scientists from the University of Georgia and the research was put forth to the world on July 19, 2017.
Having trouble comprehending what the quantity 8.3 billion tons amounts to? Let us help, 8.3 billion tons is the weight of one billion elephants or 25,000 Empire State buildings. That's how much!
READ ALSO: #ThrowbackToday: When she was 14, this Romanian gymnast scored a perfect 10 at the Olympics
Many gut-wrenching statistics came to the fore like 70% of all that plastic is now in landfills or water bodies. And if nothing is done, by the year 2050, humankind would have produced 12 billion metric tons of plastic waste! Want in on more stats from the study? Here we go:
- Of the 8.3 billion tons produced, 6.3 billion tons had already become waste
- Half of 8.3 billion tons of plastic was produced in the last 13 years alone
- In the year 2010, 8 million metric tons of plastic entered the oceans
- Of the 8.3 billion tons of plastic, only 9% was recycled and 12% was incinerated
- Only about 30% of what was produced remains in use today
- From two million metric tons in 1950, we went on to produce over 400 million metric tons in 2015