I recently wrote an article on shopping bags discovering that it takes one plastic bag 450-1,000 years to decompose for all the energy in the bag; then it leaches toxins into the environment. But in landfills, because of the way they're built to prevent this leaching, even paper hardly decomposes. Landfills are lined with clay and plastics that make it hard for the right conditions to exist for proper decomposition. Go figure. So Barbie has a lifespan far, far longer than any of us.