Widespread confusion around “virgin” and “recycled” plastic sees most plastic still end up in landfill or the ocean, according to the Acer Plastic Pandemic Report.
More than 3.4 million tonnes of plastics are used in Australia every year, with less than 10% being recycled or reprocessed for re-use. Most plastic waste finds its way into the ocean or landfill, contaminating the soil, contributing to climate change and negatively affecting natural landscapes and wildlife.
The Acer Plastic Pandemic Report highlights current consumer attitudes towards plastic consumption and demonstrates the need for greater education. The report was commissioned by Acer Australia, as part of the technology company’s commitment to help tackle environmental challenges and champion sustainable product innovation.
More than half of Australia’s adult population (55%) is unaware of the severity of the plastic pandemic, according to the report. Almost 6 in 10 (58%) Australians don’t understand the difference between virgin and recycled plastics.
Post-consumer recycled plastic (PCR) is manufactured from used, recycled and repurposed plastic that is collected from beaches, oceans, land and recycling plants. This include plastic bottles, cleaning product bottles and plastic containers. By recycling these plastics, waste is diverted from landfill, making it a sustainable and less wasteful alternative to 100% virgin plastic.
While 96% of Australians surveyed are concerned about the impact that their individual plastic consumption has on the environment, only 50% are actively looking for more sustainable substitutes. A mere 25% of respondents are making a conscious effort to no longer purchase single use plastics.
The Acer Aspire Vero – Acer’s first Green PC Laptop designed with fully integrated PCR plastic – is now available in Australia.
Acer has also partnered with Ecycle Solutions, an e-waste recycling company, to create true circularity of products and provide consumers nationally with convenient drop-off locations for their old devices. The partnership with Ecycle Solutions, and Harvey Norman, is focussed on extracting 3 million kilograms of reusable e-waste for input into finished goods each year.