Plastic Waste has become a major talking point recently. Governments and large corporations have made it clear that reducing the amount of plastic we throw away is a priority. But, plastic is not the only by-product of our consumption habits.
Every day we throw away items which take years to decompose in landfills. How long do this items actually take to decompose?
Plastic is very common in our life. It takes up to 1000 years for some forms of plastic to decompose. The plastic bags we get from the shops can take anywhere between 10 and 1000 years, while the bottles we drink our water from can take 450 years or more.
Up to 120, 000 cans are recycled per minute in America alone. Each can take anywhere between 80 – 200 years to decompose in a landfill. Tin cans will take 50 years to degrade while the worst is Tinfoil, which will not biodegrade.
Glass is one of the easiest waste products to recycle as it is made of sand. In some cases, if the glass is not recycled and ends up in a landfill where it will not decompose or may take millions of years to do so.
Paper is another waste product that can easily be recycled. If it is sent to a landfill it will take about 6 weeks to decompose. This is not a long time in comparison to the other products listed here, however, paper does take a large amount of space in landfills during those 6 weeks. This can be avoided if any paper waste is recycled.
The majority of our waste products will most likely outlast the next few generations. Every effort needs to be made in order to reduce our waste footprint.