Plastic trash creates special problems. Landfills are overflowing, islands of garbage are collecting in our oceans, and this trash doesn’t disappear! Plastic has a long half-life and can be toxic to wildlife. Consider the plastic that wraps our food. When the sun’s ultraviolet rays hit plastic floating on the ocean surface, the bonds between polymer molecules are broken. The plastics don’t break up completely, but break down into tiny bits of plastic. When fish eat the plastic in place of real food, they starve to death.