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A food delivery courier packs an order in Bangkok on March 25, 2020, after the government limited restaurants to takeout during the COVID-19 pandemic. MLADEN ANTONOV / AFP / Getty Images

By Tanika Godbole

Southeast Asia is one of the biggest sources of plastic waste from land to the ocean, and Thailand is among the top five contributors. In January, Thailand placed a ban on single-use plastic, and was looking to reduce its plastic waste by 30% this year.

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Only the paper part of a drink carton would be recycled everything else, including the plastic coating or layer or aluminum foil, would be incinerated as residual waste. tavan amonratanasareegul / Getty Images

By Jeannette Cwienk

When it comes to recycling and recyclability, very little, it seems is straightforward — even something as seemingly simple as orange juice can present a conundrum. In Germany, many smaller shops sell drinks in cartons or plastic bottles, both of which will end up in the yellow recycling bin. But how do their recycling credentials stack up?

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A mallard duck among plastic in polluted water in Cardiff Bay on Sept. 22, 2018 in Cardiff, United Kingdom. Matthew Horwood / Getty Images

The gruesome images of whales and deer dying after mistaking plastic for food has helped put into perspective just how severe the plastic waste crisis is. Now, a new study finds that it is not just land and sea animals eating our plastic trash. It turns out that birds are eating hundreds of bits of plastic every day through the food they eat.

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Plastic waste from the nearby city of Ushuaia is polluting nests and being found in penguins' stomachs and excrement. Deutsche Welle

Tierra del Fuego is at the southernmost tip of South America and is sometimes known as the "end of the world." This windswept part of Argentina is home to seven penguin colonies which breed, nest and feed in the area.

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A biologist looks at microplastics found in sea species at the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research near Athens, Greece on Nov. 26, 2019. LOUISA GOULIAMAKI / AFP via Getty Images

New research suggests there may be far more microplastics in the ocean than initially estimated.

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Avantium, a biochemical company in the Netherlands, is fundraising for a new project that will turn sustainably grown crops into a plant-based plastic. Avantium

While some are trying to clean up the plastic pollution in the oceans, and others are removing it from beaches, one company is looking to end the need for plastic bottles that last hundreds of years and are rarely recycled. A Dutch company is looking to fight the plastic crisis with a plant-based alternative that degrades in one year, as The Guardian reported.

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Chemical recycling involves sorting plastic by type, grinding into powders, and mixing and melting into the same kind of polymers from which the powders were generated. sturti / Getty Images

By Brigitte Osterath

Yogurt pots, shampoo bottles, coffee-to-go lids, bubble wrap — plastic products are all composed of the same building blocks: long carbon chains.

Heating them to high temperatures makes the carbon chains crack into a mixture of shorter molecules, ultimately converting them back into crude oil, the resource from which the majority of plastic products were originally made.

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The beach of Mimiza in France where researchers measured microplastics on the sea breeze. NICOLAS TUCAT / AFP via Getty Images

Around eight million metric tons of plastic are dumped into the world's oceans every year, but researchers still don't know where it all ends up.

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Plastic waste floating in the ocean. Eloi_Omella / Getty Images

By Elizabeth Claire Alberts

In 2018, Lauren Biermann was scouring a satellite image of the ocean off the coast of the Isle of May, Scotland, searching for signs of floating seaweed for a project at her university. Her eyes were drawn to lines of white dots gently curving along an ocean front.

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On March 2, 2019, the Schiavonea beach in Calabria, Italy is littered with microplastics lifted from the seabed following a storm in the Ionian sea. Alfonso Di Vincenzo / KONTROLAB / LightRocket / Getty Images

Scientists have discovered the highest concentration of microplastics ever recorded on the seafloor—1.9 million pieces in one square meter (approximately 11 square feet) of the Mediterranean.

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A man receives a food delivery in plastic bags at his home. Alex Potemkin / Getty Images

By Daiane Scaraboto, Alison M Joubert and Claudia Gonzalez-Arcos

In eight years, US environmentalist and social media star Lauren Singer had never sent an item of rubbish to landfill. But last month, in an impassioned post to her 383,000 Instagram followers, she admitted the reality of COVID-19 has changed that.

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