Plastic Bags

Topics: United States Environmental Protection Agency, Plastic shopping bag, Sea turtle Pages: 4 (708 words) Published: April 24, 2015
Negative Effects of Plastic Bags
There are several issues on earth that need immediate attention; such as global warming and green house effect, air pollution, climate change, and plastic pollution. Current use of plastic bags and disposal, both not only create environmental problems, but also reinforce the perception of a wasteful society. Human beings invented plastic bags for the convenience of carriers and packers. However, plastic bags have become one of the today’s serious issues that need immediate attention. The negative effects of plastic bags are enormous. Plastic bags are difficult to produce, nearly impossible to get rid of once produced, and harmful to wildlife.

To begin with, plastic bags are difficult to produce. The most common plastic bags we see today are made from polyethylene. Polyethylene is made from crude oil and natural gas. A 2011 news report conducted by the National Conference of State Legislatures found that it requires about 12 million barrels of oil to make 380 billions of plastic bags. According to Doucette Kitt The Plastic Bag Wars 2011 states: American shoppers us an estimated 102 billion plastic bags each year – more than 500 per consumer, named by Guinness world records as “the most ubiquitous consumer item in the world, “the ultrathin bags have become a leading source of pollution worldwide. To produce billions of plastic bags requires million barrels of oil, thus our natural resources of oil are finishing.

Secondly, plastic bags are nearly impossible to get rid of once produced. Plastic bags take approximately 400 years to degrade. Plastic bags don’t biodegrade, they photo degrade breaking down into smaller toxic polluting our soil, rivers, and oceans. According to The U.S. Environment Protection Agency biodegradation is “A process by which microbial organisms transform or alter (through metabolic or enzymatic action) the structure of chemicals introduced into the environment.” According to a news paper article “Will...

Cited: Bridget, Warner. “Sacking the Culture of Convenience: Regulating Plastic Shopping Bags to Prevent Further Environmental Harm.” ProQuest Research Library Prep. university of Memphis, 26 July 2011. Web. 23 Nov. 2011.
Kitt, Doucette. “The Plastic Bag Wars.” proquest re. Rolling Stone LLC, 4 Aug. 2011. Web. 1 Dec. 2011.
Lapidos, Juliet. “WILL MY PLASTIC BAG STILL BE HERE IN 2507?” USA Today 27 June 2007: n. pag. Access U.S. Newswires. Web. 4 Dec. 2011.
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