The World Is Flooded With Plastic Waste

08 07 2024 | 16:03María Florencia Melo

In just two decades, the global annual production of plastic waste has increased from 180 million tonnes to nearly 400 million tonnes, according to the OECD's Global Plastics Outlook report. Meanwhile, plastic waste is expected to nearly triple worldwide by 2060, with half of all waste expected to be in landfill while less than one-fifth of it will be recycled.

In recent years, growing awareness around the extent and dangers of plastic pollution has paved the way for greater policy intervention. As Euronews reported last year, more than 100 countries have already either fully or partially banned single-use plastic bags. At the same time, many are also banning other types of disposable items, such as cutlery and drinks mixing sticks.

Given that packaging accounts for almost 40 percent of the total weight of plastic waste generated worldwide, its reduction and recycling is a priority in the fight against plastic pollution. In a 2022 Ipsos survey of more than 23,000 respondents, 70 percent of people surveyed in 34 countries around the world agreed that there should be international standards banning single-use plastics.


Written by: María Florencia Melo

Translated by: Anna Fleck