Break Free From Plastic Pollution
Plastic pollution is an environmental crisis due to its impact on greenhouse gas emissions, impact on human and wildlife health, and inequitable impacts on communities of color and low income communities.
Plastics generate greenhouse gases at every phase of their life cycle from fossil fuel extraction to refining and manufacturing to usage and to waste management. In 2019, a conservative estimate approximated that plastic production and incineration emitted 850 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent to 189 500-megawatt coal-fired power plants operating at full capacity.
Plastics have infiltrated our air, water and land, killing and injuring wildlife and harming human health. Only 9% of plastic ever gets recycled, leaving the other 91% to enter our ecosystems. Microplastics have been found from the Mariana Trench to the human placenta. The chemicals within plastics can cause cancer, diabetes, reproductive disorders, and neurological impairments in development.
Petrochemical facilities that turn fracked gas into plastic and incinerators that burn plastic are often located in communities of color and low-income communities that bear the brunt of their dangerous pollution, resulting in the plastic pollution crisis also becoming an environmental justice crisis.
Still, the U.S. continues unabated plastic products and exports 225 shipping containers of plastic waste per day to countries with limited or nonexistent waste management systems.
The Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act represents a vital opportunity for Congress to take real action and address the plastic pollution crisis. The act offers a comprehensive set of regulations and guidelines, reducing the production and use of single-use plastics, preventing pollution from plastic products from entering into food chains and waterways, and protecting frontline and fenceline communities.
Visit the BFFP Website
View the full bill here.
Read about the negative impacts of plastic pollution: