Plastic pollution is increasingly turning into a global crisis with a rise in plastic garbage that we produce every day. Plastic water bottles alone are creating a huge amount of plastic waste. Americans use nearly 29 million water bottles every year. These numbers for the entire world are alarming. And, sadly, only one-sixth of these plastic water bottles are recycled and the rest of them end up in garbage and landfills, ultimately. One bottle takes over 1000 years to decompose and we can well imagine the havoc we are wreaking on this planet by using a disposable plastic bottle every time we feel thirsty.
Not only are the water bottles causing environmental hazard but they are also leading to wastage of our precious natural resources as fossil fuels are used in the making of them. This article sheds light on a few facts that will make clear how plastic water bottles are destroying our beloved planet.
- The amount water used in the making of a water bottle is three times that used to fill it.
- The raw material from which a plastic bottle is made is a petroleum product known as polyethylene terephthalate (PET). A huge amount of fossil fuels are used in the manufacturing and transportation process.
- The energy consumption in water bottle production process is almost 2,000 times more than that required to produce tap water.
- The figures are suggestive of the fact that 17 million barrels of oil are consumed annually in producing water bottles.
- While it takes 90 gallons of water to produce enough bottled water for a person for one year, there are over 783 million people across the world who don’t have access to clean drinking water.
- Of all the garbage floating in the water bodies, 90% is plastic. This amounts to approximately 46,000 pieces of plastic per square mile.
- Bottled water consumption is rising 10% every year.
- 80% of the water bottles bought end up in landfills and never get recycled.
- It takes over 1,000 years for a bottle to decompose, it releases harmful chemicals into the land and environment along the decomposition process.
- The toxins released by bottles into land and environment are causing a lot of health issues including reproductive problems, cardiac problems, and even cancer.
- Plastic in oceans and seas is having adverse effects on the marine life as the aquatic animals sometimes consume the plastic in water mistaking it for food. Not only does it cause health issues in them but also death.
What can you do to help?
- Quit the use of plastic water bottles and replace them with stainless steel ones or glass bottles.
- Carry your filtered water in a stainless steel bottle when you go out so that you don’t have to buy water.
- Talk about the problems associated with plastic pollution with your friends and family, and encourage them to quit plastic.
- Find alternatives to everything plastic in your life.
- The plastic you can’t quit, make sure it goes to recycle when it retires.