33-year-old bags of chips found in a ditch look like new

Unfortunately, we have already begun to get used to the huge amount of garbage in the form of cans, plastic bottles, packs of cigarettes, food and other waste. But a significant part of the garbage is stored for decades.

So a group of British volunteers while cleaning along the A48 motorway found well-preserved bags of chips thrown away by someone 33 years ago - a kind of message from the era of Margaret Thatcher.

Scientists claim that plastic and glass waste can be stored without decomposition for thousands or even millions of years. Yes, and with food waste, everything is not so good. For example, a banana peel will completely rot only after a month, and an orange peel after 2 years. The possibilities of nature for the disposal of human waste are far from unlimited and require enormous efforts and a long time from it.

Fruit pieces rot fastest - 2 weeks, and paper towels, bags, newspapers and cloth - about a month. In a month and a half, grain husks, paper bags and banana peels rot. Nature will spend 2-3 months on recycling milk bags, juices and cardboard boxes.

Cotton products and softcover books will be "digested" only six months later. It will take a year for light woolen clothes, 2 years for orange peels, plywood and cigarette butts. Heavy woolen clothes like an overcoat will "dissolve" in 5 years.

Centenarians include PET plastic bags - 20 years, nylon fabrics - 30-40 years. For half a century, nature has released cans, car tires, exercise equipment, coffee cups and leather goods.

Chip bags are surprisingly tenacious - 75 to 80 years old. Plastic rings connecting several aluminum cans (200 years) in a package will "live" 5 times longer, up to 450-500 years. The same amount is meted out to plastic bottles.

Representatives of glass containers - 1-2 million years old - became the absolute record holders. Only the contents of spent batteries - zinc chloride, lead, mercury, cadmium - which, when released into the ground, kill all living things, so they first of all need to be disposed of, can survive them.