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HALLOWEEN COSTUMES WILL CREATE 2,000 TONNES OF PLASTIC WASTE IN THE UK THIS YEAR, ENVIRONMENTAL CHARITY WARNS

environment

Halloween costumes will create 2,000 tonnes of plastic waste this year, an investigation has found, as trick or treaters are being urged to buy second hand fancy dress.

Assessing the composition of 324 Halloween clothing items from 19 major retailers, nature charity The Fairyland Trust, supported by environmental charity Hubbub, found 83 per cent of the materials used were made from oil-based plastic - equating to 83 million plastic bottles.

The Fairyland Trust surveyed costumes from; Aldi, Argos, ASOS, Amazon, Boden, Boohoo, Ebay, H&M, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, Matalan, Next, PrettyLittleThing, Sainsburys, Tesco, TK MAXX, Topshop, Wilko and Zara.

The “great majority” of which were made “mainly or wholly” from polyester, they said.

Polyester, similar to nylon and acrylic, is made entirely from oil and behaves as a “persistent pollutant” in the environment in the form of microplastics, the report said.

A recent study from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation found just 1 percent of material used to produce clothing, such as polyester, is recycled.

It is estimated around 7 million Halloween costumes are disposed of each year in the UK, and using 30 sample costumes with an average plastic weight of 297g, the charity found the total yearly plastic waste equates to 2.079m kg, or 2,079 tonnes.

The charity has urged people to ditch the plastic and instead scour charity shops, re-use old costumes or even make their own.

Suggested thrifty ideas are to use an umbrella to create bat wings, or old curtains to create a “medieval cloak”.

Chris Rose, of the Fairyland Trust, said: “The scariest thing about Halloween is now plastic.

“It’s vital that we all try and choose costumes that are as environmentally friendly as possible.”

 

This article was originally published on telegraph

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