when you finish a bottle of drink, or milk, or a jar of marmalade or suffink, do you absent-mindedly screw the lid back on and shove it in a bin and walk off merrily whistling luck be a lady?
i bet you do sometimes.
i'm gonna be a bit generous with figures in a minute:
let's say that the average household has one person a week who screws the lid back on the equivalent of a bottle of milk, bins it and walks away, whistling.
there's something like 60 million official people living in this country, plus an estimated minimum million unofficial. lets say for arguements sake; the average household has five people in it.
so every week, 12,000,000 milk bottles - thats 48 million pints of air - are screwed up into an airtight container and sent off to lie on a dump somewhere.
and they're made of plastic, so thats it. it's the equivalent of packaging up oxygen and sended it shooting off into outer space never to be seen, smelled or sucked again. a lot of it.
if we've been doing that for ten years or so, we've packaged up 24,960,000,000 pints of air and put into indefinite storage.
and that's just by people who live in britain. admittedly thats just working out a bit of maths in five minutes and i haven't gone into micro-calculation or anything, but i reckon i can't be far enough off to let you all relax.
just leave the lid off, okay.
Cotton rags 1-5 months
Paper 2-5 months
Rope 3-14 months
Orange peels 6 months
Wool socks 1 to 5 years
Cigarette butts 1 to 12 years
Plastic coated paper milk cartons 5 years
Leather shoes 25 to 40 years
Nylon fabric 30 to 40 years
Tin cans 50 to 100 years
Aluminum cans 80 to 100 years
Plastic 6-pack holder rings 450 years
Glass bottles 1 million years
Plastic bottles Forever