by Mike Barrett
is the co-founder, editor, and researcher
Studying the work of top natural health activists, and
writing special reports for top 10 alternative health
websites, Mike has written hundreds of articles and
pages on how to obtain optimum wellness through natural
There is plastic in
every major ocean basin
In 1950, plastic was a rarity. Today, plastic is everywhere - in our
homes, cars, streets, landfills, and oceans.
calculated how much plastic humans have produced since that year,
and the conclusion is mind-boggling:
9 billion tons, or
8.3 billion metric tons. 
A study published July 19, 2017 (Production,
Use, and Fate of all Plastics Ever Made) in the
journal Science Advances reveals that plastics production has
risen at a compound annual growth rate of 8.4% in the last 67 years,
more than 2.5 times the rise in the global gross domestic product.
A mere 2 million pounds of plastic was available in 1950, compared
with more than 400 million tons in 2015. Shockingly, half of the
world's plastics were produced in the last 13 years.
And, the researchers estimated, the amount of plastic in use now is
30% of all plastics ever produced. 
As if your mind isn't boggled enough, think of it this way:
according to the U.S. Navy, 9 million tons of plastic is the
equivalent to 85,567 aircraft "supercarriers" like the USS Gerald R.
Ford, which weighs 107,000 tons (97,000 metric tons). 
As of 2015, about 7 billion tons of plastic waste had been disposed
of as waste. Of that amount, just 9% of it gets recycled, 12% is
incinerated, and 79% winds up in landfills, according to the report.
If humans don't act quickly to reverse the upward trend, 13.2
billion tons (6.3 billion metric tons) will be disposed of in
landfills by 2050, the researchers wrote.
Right now, there is
already countless plastic particles
polluting the oceans.
Something needs to be
Roland Geyer, an associate professor of industrial ecology at
the University of California, Santa Barbara, and lead author of the
new study, said:
"You could say,
a phenomenal success story,'
...but I do think it will come with
some heavy environmental collateral damage."
Geyer went on:
"Humankind is making
an incredible amount of plastics, even more than we thought it
would be, and it keeps increasing. And we're not very good at
dealing with the waste." 
The same team of
researchers worked on an earlier study which found in 2015 that
between 5 million and 13 million metric tons of plastic work their
way into the ocean each year.
In this recent study, the
researchers noted that plastics are found in every major ocean basin
on the planet. 
"The growth of
plastics production in the past 65 years has substantially
outpaced any other manufactured material.
The same properties
that make plastics so versatile in innumerable applications -
durability and resistance to degradation - make these materials
difficult or impossible for nature to assimilate.
Thus, without a well-designed and tailor-made management
strategy for end-of-life plastics, humans are conducting a
singular uncontrolled experiment on a global scale, in which
billions of metric tons of material will accumulate across all
major terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems on the planet."
According to Geyer,
recycling alone doesn't cut it.
He and his colleagues
recommend weighing the advantages and disadvantages of the different
strategies for managing plastics. Reusing and recycling are 2 of
those strategies, but they've done little to solve the problem.
Strategies like substituting other materials or using
waste-to-energy or other technologies for converting the materials
into other substances should be given greater consideration.
CNBC - The world has made more
than 9 billion tons of plastic, says new study
Live Science - Humans Have
Produced a Whopping 9 Billion Tons of Plastic
One World One Ocean - The Plastics Breakdown: An Infographic