When going to buy vegetables and fruits, we all carry our purchases back home in a plastic bag. We all hear that plastic is harmful but still use it. Why do we do it? This is because plastic has become an inseparable part our life that cannot be given up easily.
Plastic is durable and cheap which makes it comfortable to use when compared to other materials. It is seen everywhere these days, from supermarkets to common households. Why is that? It is so because it has a mouldable nature which permits it to be available in almost every shape due to which it is widely used in kitchens.
Some od the items that are made of plastic and used by us regularly are LCDs, balloons, shopping bags, straws, takeaway food containers, sweet wrappers, etc. the list goes on and on. You might be surprized to know that even chewing gums are made synthetic plastic rubber, which is not biodegradable, compostable, neither can it be recycled.
We have all used plastic bottles. After using them, what do you do with them? I am sure most of us just throw it away here and there without giving it a second thought. This behaviour is the exact reason for the increase in plastic waste. There are many more such items made of plastics that are thrown away carelessly just to get rid of it. Well, now the question arises what should we then do if not to throw the plastic away? The answer is very simple: recycle it, reuse it, or simply reduce their usage while switching to products made of alternative materials.
Plastic is a disease which has no cure. The amount of harm plastic is causing on Earth is magnanimous. Plastic is a non-biodegradable material that doesn’t get dissolve in land or water. Even when it is dumped in landfills, it can take millions of years to decompose. Soils lose their fertility when plastic is dumped underneath it. Plastic also harms the marine life. The plastic dumped in the ocean is mistaken for food by the animals. Eating plastic ultimately leads to their death. Thus, many innocent animals die of plastic. For example, cows eat the plastic litter due to which it dies.
There are many ways to recycle the plastic. Some of the ideas include making of plastic roads. To reduce the carbon footprint, some of the countries of the world are melting plastic and using it to manufacture roads. Plastic can also be used for creating 3d printed furniture for public usage.
Plastic is used for creating bricks, which are less costly but much stronger than normal bricks. Wasteboards, a type of skateboard made using plastic bottle caps is another creative, innovative idea to reduce the environmental harm caused by plastic. Railway sleepers are also now being tried to make using plastic.
Plastic’s use should also stop in our schools. Children should be encouraged to bring their lunches in stainless steel boxes instead of plastic lunch boxes. Laminating to be avoided wherever possible. People should stop buying bottled drinking water. Instead, they should carry their own water bottles.
Abrupt stop to using plastic is impossible. Such is the effect of plastic on our lifestyle. The change though must take place but in a gradual and slow speed. We all have heard the saying- “Slow and steady wind the race”. The government therefore should start changing their policies in a way that prefers the sustainable way and not the plastic way. The Era of Plastic is now over. The race is on.