What are plastics and what is their environmental impact?

By: HANNAH HARRINGTON


posted on: November 14th, 2018

The word ‘plastic’ is a general term used to describe a group of materials. They can also be called polymers, because they are made of lots of repeating units that form a long chain. Most plastics are synthetic and are made from materials that come from petroleum. Some plastics can be made from natural materials.

WHAT IS PLASTIC USED FOR?

Almost anything can be made from plastic and they are very cheap to make. This makes them very useful, so plastic has been used to make a big range of products. They range from food and drinks packaging to parts of cars and aeroplanes and from medical applications to helping space exploration. Now, 448 million tonnes of plastic are produced every year!

WHAT IS THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF PLASTIC?

HOW WE CAN HELP!

People have started to focus on the problems caused by plastics. Many countries, especially African countries, are making changes to tackle the problem. Kenya, Rwanda and Morocco have banned single-use plastic bags.

We can also all do things to help.

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