After sharing with you my passion for surfing and marine conservation, the health benefits and joy obtained from riding waves, together with the growing surfing community on previous posts; I felt I should continue this post by writing about a specific topic that is a current global concern.
Plastic usage, waste and how much this issue is affecting the planet.
I have been familiar with plastic pollution and waste management since I studied my BSc. But it was not until I started travelling that I realised how wide plastic pollution has spread around the globe. I experienced places like Indonesia, Morocco and some places in Australia with their coastlines full of plastic during my travels. You have probably heard this before, the ocean will send back to shore anything that doesn't belong to it, specifically the plastic waste that is able to float which according to the environmental protection agency (EPA) is over 46 percent.
Can you imagine our coastlines around the globe full of plastics and debris ? That is a scary picture and my aim in this post is to encourage as many as I can to prevent this plastic world image from happening.
I understand it is difficult to stop using plastic products; with all the plastic bags, cups, containers, and many other products out there you might be wondering how can we do this, but let's stop to think about the business's providing these products. What positive effect can we make if a good number of us stop using plastic products? If a good number of people embrace a no plastic attitude, I believe that these companies might be forced to find another solution to replace these products.
You probably are familiar with the term Life Cycle Analysis, in case you are not, in brief this is the study that aims to assess environmental impacts related to every stage of a product's life, from raw materials to final disposal. Plastics can take from 20 to 450 years to decompose depending on their chemical composition and some can take much longer. Check the postconsumer article here for more information about it.
So think of the amount of plastic waste one person can produce in her or his life. Then try to imagine a percentage of all that plastic getting lost in the bottom of the sea and the other in landfills. The waste management we are talking about is huge. Just to give you an idea nearly 3 million tonnes of plastics are used to bottle water every year and on average an Australian family produces enough rubbish to fill a three bedroom house in a year.
Where are your thoughts on this so far? here are some ideas;
Plastic pollution is a fact that is really affecting marine wildlife and our health in many parts of the globe, remember what Silvia Earle says at the Mission Blue documentary, No Ocean No Us! So why not let's be part of a sustainable change that leaves a legacy we can be proud of?
Many thanks for stopping by, have a great week and please leave your comments to support this much needed global plastic clean up.
All the best,