The bags that Monica is modelling today tell the story of the average English family. Monica has 66 pieces of plastic around her neck. That’s the average amount thrown away each week by a family in England.
Of those 66 plastic things, only 8 are recycled. Recycling is only a very small part of the answer of what we need to do. And plastic does not recycle very well. It deteriorates over time. 11 out of 66 things the average family throws away get sent abroad, where we can’t control what happens to them. They may be dumped at sea or burned in poor neighbourhoods in developing countries, where the burning damages people’s health. 17 of the 66 things are consigned to rubbish dumps. One quarter of our household plastic waste ends up in landfill.
By far the majority of our plastic waste gets incinerated. A whopping 30 things out of the 66. Plastic is made from oil, and burning plastic creates pollution and as much global warming as burning coal. Wales has a moratorium on incineration and have passed a Wellbeing of Future Generations Act. They are working at reducing plastic waste. Research by Greenpeace has shown how concerted, intensive action by Government and the major supermarkets could reduce our plastic waste by a whopping 50% over the next three years. All it takes is the will to make it happen.
Another report on the event, from Musicworks, can be found by clicking here.