In the United States, the plastics industry is the third-largest manufacturing industry, and the plastics industry employs approximately one million workers and contributes $375 billion to the economy. This isn’t surprising considering that Americans use 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour. While it’s true that plastics and plastic bottles are wreaking havoc on our environment, their convenience is undeniable.
Injection molding and plastic manufacturing facilities can be found throughout the country in all 50 states. There are nearly 16,000 facilities in the United States that manufacture things such as colored bottles, plastic handleware, plastic chemical jars, wide mouth jars and more.
With all of these plastic items being manufactured at such a high rate, it’s important to dispose of them properly. Most plastic bottles can be recycled, either at a cans and bottles collection center or simply in your recycling bin. At the rate these companies are making plastic bottles, four out of five bottles ends up in a landfill, left to decompose for hundreds if not thousands of years. Today the world makes and consumes about 600 billion pounds of plastic yearly, and the market is still growing about 5% a year. If not disposed of properly, plastic will continue to add pollution to our oceans and contaminate the wildlife in their natural habitat. Americans consume 8.6 billion gallons of bottled water per year, and 53 billion gallons are consumed globally. This generates a total profit of approximately $61 billion for the industry.
The importance of recycling cannot be stressed enough. So many people are negligent when it comes to something that is so simple to do and can slow the rate of environmental damage. Many people have the mentality of, “it’s just one bottle, it won’t make a difference,” but are failing to realize that countless others have the exact same mentality, and the disastrous results really add up over time. Plastic manufacturers aren’t going to stop making plastic bottles anytime soon, so it’s important to do your part.
While plastic is one of the most convenient materials, it’s also damaging the Earth at an astounding rate. One small step you can take is to reuse and recycle plastic bottles whenever possible. It may not make a difference to you, but to our oceans’ wildlife, it can make all the difference in the world. For more information, read this website.