Plastic waste is an ongoing environmental issue in the country of Albania which has been severely worsened by the Covid-19 pandemic. Littering of plastic gloves and hand sanitizer bottles have been spread in all public areas starting from roads to beaches.
Globally, there have been 129 billion face masks and 65 billion plastic gloves being used every month showing the high numbers of plastic usage caused by this pandemic worldwide.
Specifically in Albania, however, we can see a trend occurring where individuals throw these materials away in public environments rather than recycle them. As shown on the bar chart below, Albania has the highest plastic waste per individual when compared to other countries in the Balkans, where the average Albanian liters 45 kilograms (100 lbs) a year.
Another example can be seen in the river Bunes: out of the 46 kilograms of waste which was found, around 42.3 kilograms (approximately 92%) was plastic waste. Unfortunately, beaches across Albania are also frequently polluted by plastic waste. Plastic debris often washes ashore on Albania’s coast and, on top of this, poor waste management makes it so that the pollution in these environments is worsened.