Plastic bag and straw bans arrived in full force in 2018 across the planet, from North America to Europe to Africa. Internet searches for “plastic waste” skyrocketed last year and consumer protests erupted in countries throughout the world. But why did this plastic revolt seem to flare up so suddenly in 2018? And will these bans and chatter actually have a lasting effect in the coming years? NBC Left Field’s Matt Danzico travels to unofficial plastic scrap yards in China, the streets of Thailand, and then back home to recycling centers in New Jersey to better understand how a tornado of plastic disgust is beginning to spin our chatter.
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NBC Left Field is a new internationally-minded video troupe that makes short, creative documentaries and features specially designed for social media and set-top boxes. Our small team of cinematographers, journalists, animators and social media gurus aims to unearth stories and breathe creative life into current headlines. While pushing boundaries at home and abroad, NBC Left Field will also be serving as an experimental hub for NBC News style, treatment and audience engagement.