Facts and Figures

Topic Progress:

The following statistics identify the severity of plastic pollution:

  • The UK produces over five million tonnes of plastic waste every year (Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, 2018).
  • More than eight billion tonnes of plastic has been produced world wide since the 1950s (United Nations Environment Programme, 2018).
  • Globally, only 9% of all plastic waste ever produced has been recycled (United Nations Environment Programme, 2018).
  • The UK exports around 450,000 tonnes of plastic packaging waste every year (Axion Polymers, 2018).
  • The construction industry consumes around 23% of all plastic produced in the UK (Waste and Resources Action Programme, 2018).
  • The construction industry generates an estimated 50,000 tonnes of plastic packaging waste every year (Building, 2019).
  • Piping and conduit are the most common uses of polymers in construction and consume around 35% of production (Alliance for Sustainable Building Products, 2018).