Pollution Images: Algalita Marine Research Foundation
"Plastic, like diamonds, are forever!"
Because plastics do NOT biodegrade, no naturally occurring organisms can break these polymers down. Instead, plastic goes through a process called photodegredation, where sunlight breaks down plastic into smaller and smaller pieces until there is only plastic dust. But always plastic remains a polymer. When plastic debris meets the sea it can remain for centuries causing untold havoc in ecosystems.
Algalita Marine Research Foundation

"Garbage gone but not forgotten!"
Most of our garbage is sent to landfills, dumps and municipal incinerators.  But with more and more people producing more and more waste, landfills are filling up faster than we can find new sites.  Water and oxygen are required to break down garbage.  But water and oxygen are in short supply deep in a landfill, so decomposition takes place very slowly.  In fact, when researchers cored down into a landfill in the U.S., they discovered newspapers over 30 years old still in readable condition!!!  So ultimately nothing completely degrades in modern landfills due to the lack of water, light, oxygen and other important elements that are required for the degradation process to be completed.
Environment Canada: The 4 R's

"Landfills create new types of waste"
Decomposing garbage in landfills produce a toxic liquid called leachate as well as two greenhouse gases: carbon dioxide and methane.  Burning garbage in an incinerator produces acid gases, carbon dioxide and toxic chemicals.  These pollutants must be properly treated with expensive pollution control equipment to avoid contributing to acid rain, ozone depletion and air pollution.
Environment Canada: The 4 R's

Methane gas is more than 20 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide.  Over the past 200 years, methane concentrations in the atmosphere have more than doubled, largely because of human activity. Methane accounts for 16 percent of greenhouse gas emissions and about 60 percent of methane emissions come from anthropogenic (people-generated) sources.
Usinfo.state.gov


create enormous amounts of pollution: 
create enormous amounts of pollution:
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