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Case Studies and Resources

40 year old plastic container looks almost new

Plastic wasteThis image has been making the rounds on social media the past few days, so I decided to do some research to find out just how valid it is.  I was actually surprised to find out that it is legit.  

This Yoplait container was found on a Canadian beach around a month ago, looking pretty amazing for being over 40 years old.  Due to its appearance, it is believed that it might have been a rather recent ocean occupant from a landfill.

On further research, I found out that it takes a small piece of plastic like this, about 450 years to fully break down.  That is a really long time to for something like this to float around in the ocean or sit in a landfill.  A common plastic bag can take decades to break down.  Even decomposed it is still a toxic problem for our oceans.  

A report released in January of 2016  by the World Economic Forum estimated that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans.  Considering that every year the oceans take in more than 8 million tons of plastic, it makes you re-think a bit about just how much trash we are throwing away, and how much of it makes it into the oceans.

This time of year we hear a lot of talk about New Year's Resolutions.  Mine is going to be reducing the amount of plastic I use, switching to glass and stainless steel containers and using reusable shopping bags.  What are you going to do to reduce your plastic usage?

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Topics: waste disposal food waste waste cleanup recycling plastic