Coca-Cola is the largest plastic contaminant in the world and for the second time in two years, the Coca-Cola brand has been named the world’s largest plastic contaminant. It is the result of a global review of brands recognizable for the plastic waste collected on the beaches that once a year conducts the global Break Free From Plastic movement.
The audit found that Coca-Cola is responsible for more plastic than the next three contaminants from the list together. Thousands of volunteers, namely 72 514, in 51 countries around the world have organized to collect litter from beaches, river banks and around their workplaces and homes. They collected 476 423 pieces of plastic waste, with the origin of the wrappers, or the brand, being visible in 43 percent of the pieces, with the remainder being unrecognizable. Most of the waste was collected on September 21, and the rest on other occasions. The volunteers cataloged the waste on 8,000 brands and 50 types of materials. Ten of this year’s biggest polluters are Coca Cola, Nestle, PepsiCo, Mondele International (Oreo), Unilever, Mars, Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive, Philip Morris and Pfeiffer Van Mile. Coca-Cola is responsible for 11,732 pieces of plastic found in 37 countries on 4 continents.
Coca-Cola is the largest plastic pollutant in Africa and Europe and the second largest pollutant in Asia and South America, while North America is even fifth on the list. Coca-Cola is the largest plastics pollutant in Africa and Europe and the second largest pollutant in Asia and South America, while North America is even fifth on the list. According to the Break Free From Plastic movement, Nestlé is the biggest polluter on this continent, followed by Solo Cap Company and Starbucks. Also, this year’s top three polluters were in identical positions in last year’s audit.
As the Break Free From Plastic movement points out, the meaning of this review is to make it clear to polluters that it “will not stop” with liability calls until companies give up disposable plastic. Here we will skip over the fact that ethical responsibility is being addressed and that punishment is practically a taboo question, raised only in exceptional cases. However, Break Free From Plastic is not just about moral condemnation. Instead, the movement deconstructs the media strategy of multinationals that have been shifting the responsibility of consumers to their products for years while offering either as part of the solution or as simply pointing out the Break Free From Plastic movement, “we have credible data confirming our thesis, and for that, corporations can no longer shift responsibility solely to consumers – the numbers just aren’t on their side. “
In the opinion of 1,800 NGOs united in the Break Free From Plastic movement that was founded in 2016, it will be impossible to reduce plastic pollution without cooperating with these companies. They have to make huge changes to their production. The era of disposable plastic waste has simply passed, considered in motion, and calls for the polluters listed in the audit to announce how much plastic they actually use. They consider this to be the first necessary step to adopt an adequate strategy to reduce the use of plastics. They then expect corporations to completely redesign their product wrappers completely by avoiding plastic.
After use, plastics are buried in the ground and set on fire, and only 9 percent of annual production is recycled. Plastic production has exploded over the decades, and now, as we understand the consequences of its longevity, instead of gradually abandoning this product, it is increasingly invested. in new plants for the production of this material, and the problem of its storage has not yet been resolved. Estimates say that by 2050 plastic production will increase fourfold, driven by the cheap extraction of fossil fuels from shale. After use, the plastic is buried in the ground and set on fire, and only 9 percent of annual production is recycled. And for a reason. Plastics can be recycled only a few times, as each recycle reduces the durability of the polymers and thus loses quality and becomes unsuitable for packaging food and beverages. But even recycled plastic is used for garment production, used in construction, and has other uses that can not be recycled further, but not suitable for food and beverages.
Such a practice contradicts companies’ promises to reduce the environmental impact of their products by making them 100 percent renewable or recyclable.
Recycling is not the solution
we can’t wait to invent harmless material that can be used instead of plastic.Brake Free From Plastic vigorously states that “we can’t recycle the road from problems with plastics and companies claiming that recycling is the solution and avoiding any a real change, “they argue,” only by clearly labeling the real culprits can we expect them to take some action, change the wrappers and reject their destructive business models. The audit also says that there is no single silver bullet that will solve one of the companies’ problems with plastics, that is, we cannot wait to invent harmless material that can be used instead of plastic.
Starting with that assumption, Greenpeace concluded that the product wrappers we find on the beach must meet the criteria for multiple use: to be fair, durable, to be able to afford them, to be practical, harmless and simple.
The story of Coca-Cola as the biggest polluter was also released by Intercept who sought and received comment from the company: It is completely unacceptable for us to end up in our oceans – or elsewhere where it does not belong … “Although in recent years trying to brand itself as a leader in environmental protection, Intercept found audio footage of Coca-Cola executives trying to thwart planned laws to ban disposable plastic bottles. But Coca Cola doesn’t stop there either, last year it tried to adopt the term “zero waste” by bringing it under recycling. Namely, the wise company has tried to present its cheap investment in plants for collecting its own packaging and its recycling in Thessaloniki in Greece and in Budva in Montenegro as an investment in these cities and their transition to “zero waste”. After all, Coca-Cola in Budva has invested in an “interactive center” where visitors can learn about the ecology and assistance in co-financing the Catch a Clean Wave program to help collect waste from more than 40 beaches on the Riviera in Budva. Coca-Cola in Budva completed its ‘zero waste’ concept by buying another 30 bins.