The Ugly Facts About Plastic Bags

Plastic bags are made of polyethylene
Polyethylene is a petroleum product
Production contributes to air pollution and energy consumption
Four to five trillion plastic bags are manufactured each year
Americans use over 380 billion polyethylene bags per year
Americans throw away approximately 100 billion polyethylene bags per year
Of those 100 trillion plastic bags, 1% are recycled
It takes 1000 years for polyethylene bags to break down
As polyethylene breaks down, toxic substances leach into the soil and enter the food chain
Approximately 1 billion seabirds and mammals die per year by ingesting plastic bags
Plastic bags are often mistaken as food by marine mammals. 100,000 marine mammals die yearly by eating plastic bags.
These animals suffer a painful death, the plastic wraps around their intestines or they choke to death
Plastic bags choke landfills
Plastic bags are carried by the wind into forests, ponds, rivers, and lakes

From the article "Say No to Plastic Bags: The Shocking Facts About Polyethylene Bags" by Julie Burtinshaw
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