Plastic pollution is defined as “accumulation in our surroundings/ environment to such an extent that it causes untold damage to habitat, animals and humans”
Plastic was discovered in 1907 and in this 100+ year, it has been used in everything possible and has also achieved unmatched notoriety.
The western world has learnt a lesson and has banned plastic bags and restricted plastic that could harm more; I was glad to see that in Uttaranchal state of India, plastic bags are banned; the shopkeepers dispense their wares in a bag made of non-woven fabric.
But, the rest of India; any city, town or a village in India, we are sure to find plastic carry bags largely black but of every possible colour littered all around us!
Go to any beach, thousands of these carry bags are washed ashore!
Also, whenever we purchase any item, be it electronic or hardware or electrical or veggies or fruit or even eggs – they are given in a plastic bag. Purchase your favourite drink and you will get the straw made up of plastic!Buy any electronic item (or even a smartphone cover) it has a molded plastic container! In short, from an infant’s feeding bottle to the coffee dispensers to pickles alcohol to computer covers everything is ‘plasticized’!
Are we aware of the means of safe disposal of these plastic bags? No, would be the unanimous answer. All parents teach kids appropriate manners, but when it comes to disposing plastic, do they themselves know?
Hazardous effects of plastic?
- Plastics choke the sewerage system. When any city sewage system is being undertaken for maintenance they find tonnes of plastic bags choking them
- Plastics are thrown into the river and reach high seas where marine animals consume them thinking it is food.
- Farms and fields become infertile and crop production is severely reduced
- Animals eat these plastic bags which are littered and choke
- Many a children have died suffocating on a plastic bag left unattended around the house.
- They are littered all over, making the landscape unhygienic and ugly
Just as charity begins at home, let us start our own bit to reduce the use of plastic and start right from our kitchen/ our shopping.
- Carry a cloth bag when shopping for groceries/ veggies.
- Though food grade plastic is available, try using glass jars for storing
- Cut your next cake with a steel knife
- Use recyclable plastic as long as it is safe rather than disposing it after one use.
- Prefer reusable cloth diapers over plastic disposable ones.
Dr Satish Kanojia, Practicing Homoeopathy & Biochemic since last 20 years; He is Assistant editor of National Journal of Homoeopathy, India’s largest Homeopathic Journal. Dr Satish has rich experience in writing research articles, creating MCQs, Academic Crosswords and Sudokus