Several selfish thoughts have encouraged man to put his money-grubbing interests first, leading to horrible consequences for the environment: deforestation, desertification, global warming, genetic modifications and the hole in the ozone layer are just a few examples of what human beings have been able to do throughout the centuries. But currently the topic we are always kept up to date with concerns plastic pollution.
Plastic is one of the most used materials in the world. It’s lightweight, disposable and cheap. This is the reason why it can suit a broad spectrum of uses.
Bottles, dishes, cutlery, cosmetics, adhesives, detergents, toothbrushes, toys, straws, cotton buds, balloon sticks holders, Cd jewel cases, yoghurt containers, packaging for foods: The majority of the objects that we are daily surrounded by are made up of plastic. Indeed, we practically depend on plastic and it seems impossible to get rid of it.
But has anyone ever thought about the consequences that a small colorful plastic drinking straw can have on our planet?
There are now 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic in the world’s oceans and scientists have found it in 114 aquatic species; more than half of which end up on our dinner plates.
70% of the Earth’s surface is covered by oceans, and they play a crucial role in our lives. First of all, the fish which is found within them provides one of the most important sources of protein in many diets. And secondly, the seas control our climate and weather. In fact, some data have revealed that plastic pollution can actively contribute to the greenhouse effect and to climate change. But fish and shellfish aren’t the only foodstuffs that can contain plastic. Some recent research has shown that it can also be found in tea bags, beer and honey. Thus, even our bodies now contain plastic waste. In fact, plastic pollution has been identified both in animals and in individuals. This amount of plastic that we ingest every day leads to one terrible consequence: human diseases.
Current data have brought to light that the human endocrine system may be subjected to several plastic-triggered damage, which prevent it from working properly in our body. Moreover, nowadays there’s an increasing number of cancer sufferers and even young people are being diagnosed with cancer. Do you know what the main cause is? Us! Everything is related to how we treat our planet Earth. The air we breathe, the delightsome food we are used to eating, the fresh fruit we buy at the open-air market, the clothes we wear, the water we drink: everything is polluted and this may get worse in the future. The word “toxic” has become part of our daily life. Unfortunately, only 20% of the produced plastic has been recycled or disposed of up to now.
How heartless can human beings be if they go straight on destroying their own planet without realising that the solution is simple? They should stop placing their selfish interests first and stop using the oceans as their own dustbins. Putting ethics before their self-centeredness could make them understand how dangerous this situation can be: We’re completely drowning in plastic. Everyone is aware of the risks that our planet is exposed to and everyone should start aligning his actions with his values, otherwise there will be no future for us and for the next generations.
It’s something that needs to be done as soon as possible. We have now reached a crossroads, but we haven’t failed yet. Small daily steps go a long way: if we started recycling plastic or promoting plastic awareness through different media, we would be able to reduce pollution and to make the environment green and great again. In this way, there could still be a glimmer of hope for our planet Earth!