Plastic is eating Earth alive, bit by bit, it is slowly destroying our only potential home. There are 7.5 billion of us in the world right now and more than half of us use plastic items in our daily lives. Some items include bags, bottles, containers, cutlery, plates, straws, cups, decorations and hundreds more! This is absolutely horrifying. Worse, humans are producing 300 million tons of plastic every year! So, why is plastic so harmful to the environment?
Unlike other materials we use and dispose of, such as glass, paper, wood or metal, the material, plastic takes hundreds, even thousands of years to completely decay and with so much of it in the world at this moment, it does not have enough space on land to get rid of.
Due to the limited space on land, most of the plastic is dumped into water bodies such as lakes, rivers, seas and mostly in oceans as its waters are deep enough to store them all. When the process is done, people often dismiss the consequences and those consequences are the danger we’re being lead into.
As there is an astonishing amount of plastic in the water, some animals living in them can mistake plastic for their food. For example, in the seas and oceans, there is so much plastic that animals unknowingly feed on them everyday! This is hazardous to their health and they all might die for this! Sea turtles, for instance, consume plastic bags, thinking it’s their favorite food, jellyfish!
There have been multiple cases of poor aquatic animals dying and washing up on the shores, their stomach and intestines filled with plastic. This is absolutely heartbreaking, they must have been through unimaginable pain in their last moments. If this keeps on happening to all animals in the water, they all may become extinct and this will greatly hamper the Earth’s ecosystem. Moreover, plastic causes water to become unsanitary, causing pollution and we might consume the animals in water that ate plastic and this will be lethal to our health.
Plastic is also a cause of climate change! Heat from the sun cause the plastic to release powerful greenhouse gases, leading to further disasters. As our climate changes, the Earth gets hotter, the plastic breaks down, increasing the rate of climate change. Yes, plastic is so deadly that it can change our planet’s temperatures.
Thus, with all the dangers of plastic, the material must be banned and we could use biodegradable materials instead. Furthermore, if plastic is prohibited forever, it can be possible to achieve some of the SDG goals! Let’s take action, there are only 10 years left!
~My thoughts on plastic pollution