The price of plastic in no way accounts for the true cost of it

August 27, 2019

Like many things we consume these days, the price of plastic is so cheap it doesn’t include the environmental cost of it at all, let alone other impacts such as the health implications associated with the leeching of plastic in foods, water, landfills and riverways. Further to that plastic pollution also materially impacts tourism and even tangible assets (i.e. fishing vessels). Though plastic definitely has its purposes in certain products, for most single-use convenience items it just doesn’t justify the convenience. ⁣

The actual figure can be hard to quantify as some things are so new or difficult to study in economics (i.e. certain economic losses per country due to plastic pollution). In 2012 researchers tried to come up with a number and came to a conservative 13 billion dollars for the environmental impact of plastic pollution. The cost of a product is always a difficult thing – plastic is not unusual in not including the cost of mining, resources, exploited labor, pollution etc into its price but it’s worth thinking about whenever we buy cheap goods that impact our Earth 🙂