When most people toss a plastic bottle or cup into the recycling bin, they assume that means the plastic is recycled – but a new report lays bare how rarely that actually happens.
According to the Last Beach Cleanup and Beyond Plastics, the organization behind the report released on Wednesday, the recycling rate for post-consumer plastic was just 5% to 6% in 2021.
The Department of Energy also released a research paper this week, which analyzed data from 2019, and came to the same number: only 5% of plastics are being recycled. The researchers on that report wrote that landfilled plastic waste in the United States has been on the rise for many reasons, including “low recycling rates, population growth, consumer preference for single-use plastics, and low disposal fees in certain parts of the country”, according to a press release.
Dept of Energy report -> https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0921344922002087?via%3Dihub
|If all we get is 5%, maybe it is time to ask what can we do better?|