June 19, 2021

Biology Reporter

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Petrochemical companies flood the world with plastic

Petrochemical companies flood the world with plastic

In 2019, only 20 companies were responsible for 55 percent. Single-use plastic production in the world, 100 companies account for 90 percent. Entire production. The list of the largest plastic producers has been opened by the fuel company ExxonMobil – according to the “Plastic Waste Industry Index” report, published by the Minderoo Foundation.

The Mindero Foundation report has been prepared in collaboration with experts from Wood Mackenzie, the London School of Economics and the Stockholm Environment InstituteAnd the It shows who is really responsible for the wave of plastic trash plaguing us. In public discourse, the blame for the increase in the amount of plastic waste is usually attributed to food companies, for example the production of the popular soft drink.

But it turns out that the source of the crisis is a small group of petrochemical companies that make “polymers,” the building block of plastics, the report’s authors note.

ExxonMobil tops the list of the twenty largest single-use plastic products, which add 5.9 million tons to the global plastic waste basket.

For example, the American chemical company Dow (5.5 million tons) and the Chinese Sinopec company (5.3 million tons), a company specializing in, for example. In the extraction and processing of crude oil. The top three are responsible for a total of 16 percent. Global production of plastic consumables.

Financial institutions are also included in the report. Experts revealed that nearly 60 percent. Commercial funding for single-use plastics production comes from only twenty global banks.

Since 2011, plastic producers have received a total of $ 30 billion in loans from these institutions – including Barclays, HSBC, and Bank of America.

The experts also provided data explaining the scale of the “plastic crisis”. According to projections, in the next five years there will be 30 percent. Increase in global production of single-use plastics.

This will result in 3 trillion more pieces of plastic waste by 2025 alone. Currently, secondary raw materials and recycled plastics make up about 2% of global production of plastic consumables. This means 98 percent. Of them from fossil fuels.

The report’s authors call for requiring petrochemical companies to disclose their “plastic footprint.” In doing so, they are calling for a change in the plastic production model – from one based on fossil fuels to one that operates in the spirit of circular economy.

Therefore, they are demanding that financial institutions transfer capital from companies producing plastics from fossil fuels to companies producing plastics from recycled ones.

Dominica Petrzyk

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