It's everywhere, we need it, we want it...
We live in a very plastic world! The problem is, it is destroying our world and ecosystem.
8 million tonnes of plastic is dumped in our oceans each year
“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” Robert Swan OBE
They won’t, and we need to start acting now to save the planet for our children and future generations.
The average European uses and disposes of 100kg of plastic a year. We thought we could use plastic once and throw it away with negligible impact to humans and animals. That turns out to be untrue. The problems we have created because of our unnecessary and unsustainable waste of the resource, have huge impact.
In many countries waste is used as landfill. They then grow their food (and ours when exported) all on this toxic waste.
Plastic does not rot. Due to the sun, weather and currents it can take 500 years to break down. Plastic also contains and absorbs agricultural and industrial pollutants. These tiny pieces of plastic are often mistaken by animals to be plankton. In some seas there is 60 times more plastic than plankton. Once ingested, these chemicals do not break down, but build up in an organism’s body fat. As these organisms are consumed by larger and larger organisms, the levels of toxins increase dramatically, until those at the top of the food chain, including humans, are eating fish and fowl with dangerously high levels of toxins. The record is 276 bits of plastic in one ninety day old chick.
Some of the animals will die a slow painful death with enlarged stomachs of undigested plastics. For humans we will see an increase in cancers, infertility, asthma and many other diseases.
A Plastic Ocean is a new feature-length adventure documentary that brings to light the consequences of our global disposable lifestyle. The Plastic Ocean have a mission and that is to change the world’s attitude to plastic in one generation.
Did you know:
- Packaging is the largest end use market segment accounting for just over 40% of total plastic usage.
- Annually approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide. More than one million bags are used every minute.
- A plastic bag has an average “working life” of 15 minutes.
- Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
They want to help consumers to become plastic literate, so they can make informed decisions about how and when they accept plastic, and in doing so we are shaping future demand for environmentally sensitive products and solutions.
At Amazing Trekkers Cub we are plastic literate and want to encourage our members to be aware as well. We encourage our members to avoid disposable plastic where possible. As Trekkers we want to leave no footprint and to be responsible hikers in every country we visit. Such steps we would like our members to implement on treks are:
- Take your own reusable water bottles.
- Avoid taking or using disposable plastic where possible. Use plastic free products.
- Always take rubbish down the mountain with you and dispose of responsibly.
When you are at home, you again can try and purchase products without plastic, recycle and reuse materials and use cloth bags in place of plastic.
There is hope for the mess we have made! Intelligent robot boats can help to help cleanse the oceans. New advances in technology means we could develop improved bio-plastics made from maize or starch. However this does use valuable energy and food sources.
By choosing products wisely and recycling, consumers can take small steps to make our oceans and land into something clean, calm and quiet, where blue water and white peaks meet blue skies.
Information sourced from
http://www.plasticoceans.org (please watch the trailer)