Thursday, May 6, 2004

Plastic bags consumed this year:*

173 billion.. can you believe that?

Top facts

Each year, an estimated 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are now consumed worldwide. That's comes out to over one million per minute!

Ireland has reduced plastic bag consumption by over 90% since the PlasTax was implemented in March 2002.

US annual plastic bag consumption requires an estimated 12,000,000 barrels of oil.

Hundreds of thousands of sea turtles, birds and other animals die each year from swallowing plastic bags mistaken for food.

"Plastic bags have been dubbed the national flower of South Africa because they are such a prevalent form of litter."

Each high quality reusable bag you use has the potential to eliminate hundreds, if not thousands, of plastic bags over its lifetime.

According to the American Forest and Paper Association, in 1999 the US alone used 10 billion paper grocery bags, requiring 14 million trees to be cut down.

According to the industry publication Modern Plastics, Taiwan alone consumes 20 billion bags a year – 900 per person.