Plastic bags are a major cause of environmental pollution. Plastic as a substance is non-biodegradable and thus plastic bags remain in the environment for hundreds of years polluting it immensely. It has become very essential to ban plastic bags before they ruin our planet completely. Many countries around the globe have either put a ban on plastic bags or Levi’s tax on it. However, the problem hasn’t been solved completely because the implementation of these measures hasn’t been as successful. Plastic pollution is one of the biggest problems facing our world today. It was first invented in 1907 by Belgian-American chemist Leo Baekeland. Made from petroleum products, Baekland’s “bakelite” plastic was a revolutionary material. It was lightweight, could withstand heat and cold, could hold up over time, and best of all, it was cheap and easy to mass-produce. Baekeland couldn’t have anticipated that plastic’s long-term durability would end up making it so detrimental and dangerous to the environment.
Plastic doesn’t biodegrade. When it does break down after a very long time, mind you it turns into harmful nodules of microplastic. These microplastic motes find their way into waterways, where they are digested by other creatures, including humans. They sit in the gut, piling up and leeching harmful elements into the body.
Plastic can and has been recycled for decades now, but there are some experts who think that even this isn’t such a good idea. First of all, not all plastic can be recycled. Only certain types, used for certain purposes can be reused and repurposed. When we do recycle plastic, melting it down in order to reprocess it can send harmful burning plastic smoke into the atmosphere. And frankly, we have enough problems with our atmosphere as it is.
Recycling can also be logistically and financially difficult. Problems Caused by Plastic Bags
Here are some of the problems caused by plastic bags–
- Deterioration of Environment
- Harmful for Animals and Marine Creatures
- Cause of Illness in Humans
- Clogged Sewage
- Clogged Sewage
Plastic bags are non-biodegradable. Thus, disposing of plastics is the biggest challenge.
Deterioration of Environment
They are destroying nature due to their harmful effect. Plastic bags have become the main cause of land pollution today. The plastic bags entering the water bodies are a major cause of water pollution. Hence we can conclude that these are deteriorating our environment in every possible way.
Harmful for Animals and Marine Creatures
Animals and marine creatures unknowingly consume plastic particles along with their food. Research shows that waste plastic bags have been a major reason for untimely animal deaths.
Cause of Illness in Humans
The production of plastic bags releases toxic chemicals. These are the main cause of serious illness. The polluted environment is a major reason for various diseases which are spreading easily among human beings.
Waste plastic bags are the main reason for trapping the drains and sewers, especially during rains. This can result in a flood-like situation and disrupt the normal life of people.
terms of recycling, the world is in a much better place than it was a few decades ago. Plastic bags have already been banned in many cities, counties, and countries the world over. Recycled plastic is being used to make just about everything you could imagine. Toys, bottles, tumblers, cutlery, and even a few recycling bins are just the beginning of what we can do with recycled plastic.
Although the Indian government has imposed a ban on the usage of plastic bags in many states. But people are still carrying these bags. Shopkeepers stop providing plastic bags for a few days only in the beginning.
It is time when we all must contribute our bit to make this ban a success. Thus we the educated lot of society must take it as our responsibility to stop using plastic bags. In this way, we can support the government in this campaign.
Some contributions that can be made by people are as follows:
- Seek Alternatives
- Spread Awareness
Keep a tab
In order to be successful in this mission, we must keep reminding ourselves about the harmful effects of plastic bags on our nature and keep a tab on their use. Gradually, we will become habitual to doing without these bags.
There are many eco-friendly alternatives to plastic bags like reusable jute or cloth bag.
We must reuse the plastic bags we already have at home as many times as we can before throwing them away.
While the government is spreading awareness about the harmful effects of plastic bags, we can also spread awareness through word of mouth.
Although plastic is becoming a big threat to all of us, still this problem has often been overlooked and underestimated. This is because people do not look at the long-term effect of these small, easy-to-carry bags they use in their everyday life. Besides all of these people keep using bags due to their convenience. But now everyone has to completely stop using a plastic bags to save our environment and earth.
Mrs. Sarita Almeida
School Principal at Rahul Education, Mother Mary’s English High School