Essay topics covered: How to control plastic pollution, Say no to plastic, Life without plastic, 5 R’s of waste management, advantages, and disadvantages of plastic, Initiatives to reduce plastic waste,
(Ryan International School)
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Plastic In Daily Life
Today, we are living an improved life. Everything is readily available to us. This name that has made possible this availability needs no introduction. Plastic has made our life very easy. It occupies an integral part in our daily life be it in the form of grocery bags, shampoo bottles, moisturiser tubes, chips and biscuit packaging, eye drop bottles, hair clutches, keyrings, shoes, and slippers and even clothes. But, it is a boon, especially for the packaging industry. But everybody is directing us to say no to plastic. Let’s see how can we do this.
Why is plastic used so much:
Plastic has a wonderful quality which creates its demand in almost every industry. It is its ability to be moulded into any shape. After heating palettes to a certain temperature, it can take the shape of the required material.
From spoons to submarines everything is made up of plastic.
Advantages of Plastic
- protects vulnerable products from damage by humidity, microorganisms, insects, and sunlight.
- preserves products for a longer time period.
- spillages are avoided for liquid products like milk and beverages
- Non-local products are made easily available everywhere
Disadvantage Of Plastic
As they say, “every coin has two sides”. Plastic too has one major problem. It has put the man in a comfort zone for the time period he uses these articles. The real problem starts when its usage time is over, that is, the problem of getting rid of the waste material of plastic made items. It causes plastic pollution.
Plastic does not decompose
Unlike fruit waste, it does not decompose naturally. What does that mean? This means when we throw fruits and vegetable waste, these are eaten and broken down into smaller particles by microorganisms and the residue gets mixed into the soil. But the microorganisms can’t nibble on plastic. So the waste keep lying in the environment for hundreds of years.
Plastic harms our environment in the following ways:
- Polythene bags litter everywhere on the roads spoiling the beauty of the place. Moreover, it can choke drains leading to flood-like situations.
- Toxic chemicals leach out of polythene bags and are found in the blood and tissues of humans and are linked to various ailments in human beings.
- Sometimes polythene wrappers are eaten by animals in the disguise of food which can be life-threatening.
- The giant amount of disposable waste is the biggest problem for the world.
- Disposable water bottles are the main cause of sea pollution. It has posed a survival issue for sea animals.
Due to these problems the governments of various countries are advocating the idea of banning plastic. Is this dream practically possible? Can we imagine a totally plastic free life?
What will happen without plastic:
- Packaging saves food from spoiling. Thus, it increases the shelf life of perishable food items. It saves a lot of food from going to waste.
- Without packaging, it is possible that a wide range of products that people need to start their morning do not reach them.
- The digital world will come to an end because our smartphones, tabs, and laptops use a huge amount of plastic components.
- We can’t say no to plastic. We are addicted to it to such an extent that we can’t boycott plastic from our life.
‘Say no to plastic’ slogans alone won’t work. The need of the hour is to find solutions for modern life vis-a-vis plastic.
Follow The 5 R Principle of Waste Management
Inculcate the habit of saying no to polythene bags and disposable spoons and straws.
Shopkeepers must not give carry bags with products which are already wrapped by some sort of packaging like bread and milk. People should be insisted to carry cloth or jute bag while leaving for shopping.
Companies should use the substitutes of plastic.
Do not waste food.
Bio-Plastic can be used whenever possible.
Use the grocery bags multiple times before throwing them.
Use the same disposable bottle to refill from water coolers.
It means converting plastic waste into useful things for example: making scenery from ocean waste; making a boat out of thrown water bottles.
This part should come into action only after the previous 4 have done their job because organisations need money and energy to convert the recyclable waste material into useful products.
We can take inspiration from the following. One small step at an individual level can make a huge difference. So, everyone must try to add some contribution towards saving the environment.
Some people and organisations who have taken initiative to reduce Plastic Waste are as follows:
PepsiCo India in partnership with Exnora, an environmental NGO has already reduced nearly 35000 tons of household garbage into organic manure that would have otherwise filled the landfills.
Save Himalaya Campaign is an initiative by the Indian Environmental Society to safeguard and sustain the Himalayan Ecosystem.
Adidas, a leading name in shoe manufacturing, is collecting and reusing waste plastic from oceans with the help of Parley for the oceans and making shoes and sportswear by recycling this waste. Adidas is trying to make a difference for a sustainable future. Watch Here
Since 2003, the small town of Kamikatsu, Japan has worked to become a zero-waste community. They are rigorously composting, reusing, and recycling their materials, and are close to the goal. As of 2015, only 20% of their garbage goes into their local landfills.
We are blaming each other for this huge pile of waste. But, the need of the hour is to work together to find solutions for this problem. We may live on different landmasses but we do share the same planet. It is our duty to save it from pollution by saying ”no’ to plastic.
|Moulded||to change in desired shape|
|Vulnerable||risk of being harmed, in need of special care|
|Decompose||deteriorate, to break down|
|Advocating||to approve, to speak in favour of|
|Sustainable||the quality of not being harmful to the environment|