Plastics pose a problem for the planet. Whether it’s due to the fossil fuels used to produce them or the harmful chemicals released during their slow degradation process. Despite these issues, plastic has become so intertwined with our daily lives that giving it up presents a complex challenge. Here Dr Ashlee Jahnke, Head of Research and Development at bioplastic research specialist Teysha Technologies, suggests a sustainable solution to the plastic pollution problem.
In March 2019, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation published its New Plastics Economy report, which noted that eight million tonnes of plastic packaging is produced every year by 30 global brands. Almost 50 percent of this packaging was produced by Coca-Cola, totalling three million tonnes. In fact, Coca-Cola produces more plastic pollution than PepsiCo and Nestle combined, with all three being ranked the world’s top plastic polluters. This was corroborated in a study by Greenpeace in 2020, who found Coca-Cola packaging across 40 sites out of 42 surveyed on six continents. Much of this packaging will be single-use, so the majority of the eight million tonnes produced this year will be plastic pollution next year. (Read more)