It will change when people start deciding to stop using items that come in throw away containers such as styrofoam and plastic bottles. Just because something can be recycled in some places, doesn't mean it can be recycled everywhere in the world. Nor do developing countries have the infrastructure or money to secure their waste disposal supply chain properly. This is a worldwide problem, not just Belize's.
Belize is at the western edge of the Caribbean and all the area garbage washes up on our beaches. What you saw was garbage that has washed in from other countries. I am currently seeing bottles from Jamaica on the beach that washed in with the sargasso. Last month was Haiti. Two months ago in was from Honduras. Next month? What impact do plastic bottles have on the environment?
Plastic and the Enviroment
On average we use 168 plastic water bottles each per year.
We spend on average $588.00 on water bottles each year
It takes 700 years before plastic bottles start to decompose, and can take up to 1000 years to fully decompose
Approximately 86% of plastic bottles aren’t recycled in USA, in NZ it’s 78%
Approximately 1500 bottles end up in land fills and the ocean…….every second
60 million plastic water bottles are used each day in the US alone, 30 Million in Europe, more than 100 million world wide every day
It takes 3-5 litres of water to make 1 plastic bottle
Plastic bottles are a petroleum product and use 151 billion litres of oil to produce each year. That’s enough to run 500,000 cars per year.
The water industry uses a further 1.7 billion litres of oil in distributing the water bottles around the USA alone
2,500,000 tons of a carbon dioxide was produced in the manufacturing of the plastic bottles each year
Up to 24% of bottled water comes directly from the tap
United Nations Environment Programme estimates that in every single square mile of the sea, there’s 46,000 pieces of plastic floating – worldwide
The Algalita Marine Research foundation estimates as much as 1 million pieces in 1 square km in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch
80% of all rubbish in the ocean comes from activities from the land, 20% from the activities at sea
Algalita Marine Research foundation recently did a study of 660 fish that shows on average each fish contained more than 2 pieces of plastic. One fish had 26 particles
There’s an area estimated to be the size of Texas (some say twice the size) in the Pacific Ocean known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch that is a swirling mass of plastic trash
Many researches and environmental organisations list plastic and the number one threat to our marine environment
Each year millions of birds, mammals and fish die from plastic because they either eat it or get caught in it
8 million items of marine litter have been estimated to enter oceans and seas every day,
Over 80 species of seabirds have been found to ingest plastic
90% of Laysan Albatross chick carcasses contain plastic
In turtles, plastic has been shown to block intestines and make the animals float so they can’t dive for food
In a 1998 survey, 89 per cent of the litter observed floating on ocean surface in the North Pacific was plastic.
The AMRF in 2002 found 6 kilos of plastic for every kilo of plankton near the surface. This can be as much as 30-60 times in some places
70 per cent of the marine litter that enters the sea ends up on the seabed
it takes about 272 billion litres of water a year, worldwide, just to make the empty bottles.
It’s expected that in 2010, for every single person on this planet we’ll use 100 pounds of plastic
Plastics are like diamonds………they really are forever