The 6 Key Figures about Plastic Pollution (Sources Included)

The 6 Key Figures about Plastic Pollution


We've all heard about plastic pollution at some point in our daily lives. If you work in the restauration business in the state of California, you probably know by now that since the 1st of January, 2019, every sit-down restaurant is banned from serving plastic straws to customers - unless they ask for one.

For those who are adamant about using serving plastic straws, it's going to cost you at least $25 a day. If you were looking to avoid paper straws because of the extra cost, that move is going to be questionable.

For the others who are a bit keener on avoiding trouble, or staying ahead of the competition by pushing forward your business's environmental consciousness, then read on.



We have compiled 6 key statistics that will help you convince your customers or colleagues that plastic pollution is to be taken seriously.

Let's begin!


Alternatives to Plastic Straws in Everyday Life

1. 500,000,000

The estimated number of plastic straws used by Americans daily, as advanced by National Geographic.

The American population, according to a 2018 Census amounts to 328 million. Roughly, it would mean that on average, an American uses 1.5 plastic straws everyday. This particular number does sound pretty realistic, doesn't it? Because it is, and that's not a good thing.


2. 8,000,000 Tons

The amount of plastic trash that flows into the world's oceans every year

Note: Out of those 8 billion kilograms, plastic straws account for only 0.025%, yes 0.025%, of the total.

Now, the first question that pops into people's mind at the sight of this astounding statistic is probably something in the lines of this.

"What? Then what's all the fuss about plastic straws? We surely have bigger fish to fry! How about the big polluters - the developing countries, the big conglomerates and so on?"

Well, let's be clear about something, and it might sound very counterintuitive for a company like Your Straw Guy whose whole business revolves around the fact that plastic straws are terrible for the environment.

Say, by some magical twist of a wand, we've successfully eradicated single-use plastic straws from the face of humanity, we've still got 99.975% of the problem left. Plastic pollution would still be an issue, and we would've done not much to help the cause besides making us feel better by buying pointless straws made of bamboo or paper.

That's mostly true, except for one thing. Plastic pollution is nothing novel. We've known about it for ages, yet we've done very little as individuals, myself included, to actually act upon it. We have played the blame game for a very long time, and if it takes one silly little drinking tube to change our approach towards unsustainable growth, then I'll gladly take it.

"[The plastic straws ban]... one of the gateway issues to help people start thinking about the global plastic pollution problem" - Plastic Pollution Coalition CEO, Dianna Cohen.

This movement is so much more than saying no to single-use plastic, but rather acknowledging as individuals that this is the beginning of something much greater. It's about taking personal responsibility in an issue that affects all of us, and will affect our children, and their children for centuries to come. Switching to an alternative such as Paper Straws or Glass Straws is proof of a monumental shift in mindset, that can only positively spread for the better of mankind.

Oh well, I did drag a bit on that fact. Glad you made it this far. Next fact!

 Plastic Pollution Straws Beach

3. 7,500,000

The estimated number of plastic straws lying around America's shorelines.

Plastic Straws Landfill

4. 79%

The percentage of all plastic waste that ends up in landfills following a 2017 study by Geyer et al entitled 'Production, Use and Fate of All Plastics Ever Made.'

Plastic Straws England

5. 4,700,000,000

The estimated number of plastic straws used in England per year.

Plastic Straws Ocean

6. 150,000,000 Tons

The estimated weight of plastic waste in the world's oceans.


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