You may think of Coca Cola as a great beverage to have with fish and chips. Yes, there are many harms that the drink comes with due to its high sugar content. But now, it turns out the Coca Cola, the corporation, is also ranking high as the contributor to the deteriorating health of our planet. And this time, it is for the second year!
Break Free From Plastic NGO has released an audit regarding plastic waste all over the world and Coca Cola has found itself on the top of the list. It has been found that it has produced more plastic trash than what the next top three plastic producers were able to produce. In 51 countries, volunteers took it upon themselves to work in waterways, beaches, and city streets to pick up plastic bottles, bags, wrappers, etc. to help finish the audit back in September.
And it revealed that Coca Cola was the top polluter. It had around 11,732 plastics in around 37 countries recorded on 4 continents. The total plastic waste analyzed found that it was around 2.5% of the whole. It topped the ranks in Africa and Europe and was second in South America and Asia. Nestle came second and PepsiCo came third. Other top plastic producers were Mondelēz International (developers of Oreo, Nutter Butters, etc.), Mars, Colgate-Palmolive, Phillip Morrish International, Procter & Gamble, and Perfetti Van Mille.
As per Break Free From Plastics, the companies provide false solutions to the plastic issue and do not attend to the global voice that protests the use of single-use plastics. The report is also a piece of evidence that it is necessary for corporations to take the plastic crisis seriously. As long as they invest in single-use plastic, it will translate into throwaway plastic. Recycling will not help. Break Free From Platic has around 1800 members and they require corporations to find innovative solutions to their plastic problem and stop their reliance on single-use plastic.
It’s time we held them to account.
— breakfreefromplastic (@brkfreeplastic) October 23, 2019
Previously, Coca Cola has confessed that they produce 3.3 million tons of plastic packaging each year when faced with the figures brought forward by The Ellen MacArthur Foundation. While many companies have claimed to go for recyclable plastic – recycling will not be a solution for everything.
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As per Coca Cola, they have introduced a new kind of plastic bottle that has been produced from recycled marine plastic. The company has also placed a vow last year that they will collect and recycle plastic which will be equivalent to each bottle they sell every day.
However, plastic cannot be recycled innumerable times. The polymer chains start to shorten which can cause quality deterioration. Plastic is also transformed into construction material or clothing which cannot be recycled.
As per the report, recycling cannot be the only way. We have to find solid, real changes. Plastic has been and still is one of the major, cheap products that runs the industrial world. It has created advancement in the world of medicine, transportation of water, hygiene, and technology. Plus, due to the increase of fracked natural gas supplies in the US, plastic production and export have become even cheaper.
Petrochemical industries are getting profitable again. However, according to the NGO, if we are only thinking of convenience and short-term profits, our world is doomed.
IMAGE CREDIT: Lily Oh