Plastic Bans Reports & Studies

Total Ban on Plastics Could Damage Environment

Academics from Heriot-Watt University said replacing plastics with other packaging such as glass or metal could double global energy consumption and triple of greenhouse gas emissions.

The 40-strong group, which draws expertise from engineering, science, economics and social science, said more effort should be put into re-using and recycling plastics.

Professor David Bucknall, from the university’s Institute of Chemical Sciences, told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme:

“There have been studies in the last couple of years that have demonstrated that if you take out all of the plastics and replace them with something else…then that would actually make an increase in greenhouse emissions.”

“Plastics are a vital component to the British economy – I think it contributes something like 7% of the gross product. So, economically, there would be a big impact. Furthermore, because plastics are lightweight, transportation of consumer goods in plastic packaging means fewer vehicles are required for transportation of those goods, therefore burning less fuel and greatly reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”


  • There’s no ideal solution. The replacement of plastics with glass, metal or paper may bring other environmental problems.
  • What is the real problem: our plastic consumption or the fact that plastic waste ends up in the ocean?
  • Didn’t we deal with this issue of waste collection and waste management in the past? Didn’t we decide to export our plastic waste to China for recycling? Who didn’t fulfil their side of the bargain? Whose responsibility was it to check the Chinese? Has the European Commission no responsibility in this? Really? Was it the responsibility of the local authorities?



Summary of article published on