Plastic – Our Creation,Legacy and Poison on the Planet

If we Humans are Earth’s worst creation, then Plastic is our worst creation!

Cow

Why ( not ) give up using plastic!

Considering the extinction of various species on Earth that was facilitated by humans, its clear that we are neither sensitive or compassionate in any way and we really really really don’t care about Earth, our planet we don’t own but in fact share with those who have been here longer than we have!

The reason I mention the above is cos the way i see people across me take things for granted, for example water which is scarce is treated as a commodity rather a resource!

Buying more than one fancy car that crowd the roads are a ego issue rather than necessity!

The desire to posses more than what we already have and need is a impulsive habit that is now hard to do away. We are a awfully greedy unhappy lot! I’m appalled and not sorry to say this!

Now coming closer home to India, which is a developing country mind you and its not developed yet in the right terms, however ironically many around me behave like they are living in la la land & that they will live forever.Shopping here is a “stress buster” or leisure for some.

Shopping and plastic bag!

Shopping happens to be a favorite mundane pastime for us, be it shopping for brands in shopping malls or be it handful of groceries, plastic bags happen to be our best buddies, we are ready for forsake the essential groceries we need if we don’t have a plastic bag to carry them!

My personal experience about use of plastic bags in India has disgusted and disappointed me. I am baffled at times by the atrocious insensitivity displayed by folks!

I must say that as a kid growing up in 1980s, I was never surrounded by so much plastic as today.The bread, biscuit and chocolates were all paper wrapped, not too much fancy junk was around those days, maybe cos we didn’t have so many TV channels babbling junk as they do now.

Things probably changed due to Cable TV and the Mall Lifestyle that hit the country in the beginning of 21st Century.

Mall shopping a decade ago was once a month occurrence thanks to the pricing gimmicks, tacky China made stuff and host of junk food all at one place, I would see hordes of shoppers flaunting cars, card and cash stuffing themselves to glory carrying an average 4-5 bags minimum, if every month they ended up with 5 bags then what about a year and what do they do with all that plastic, certainly not plant tree or purify water?

Then came a time when fancy malls gradually went bust, the thrill simply waned but that did not deter the consumption or use of plastic bags,  even though shopping from them became a weekly affair and plastic bags were no longer free but are now charged.

I was surprised that some are willing to pay for plastic bag rather than carrying them from home which is bizarre, are people so lazy and arrogant or just forgetful and absentminded?

Some are so finicky, can’t name any particular state or city since I’ve had similar experiences across this country, people shop for vegetables from different vendors, demand plastic packets and prefer different vegetables in different bags which is atrocious if not stupid! By the time they are done with their silly shopping they end up with an average of 10 or more plastic bags!

If onions or garlic mixed with other vegetables are in danger of being wet then why can’t radish, carrot and beet be in one bag? No one wants to answer this!

Why do we need a plastic bag for a mere matchbox, incense stick, masala packet and shampoo sachet? No one has an answer to this!

Gone

When I ask the shopkeepers or vendors that why do they dole out so many plastic bags without a moment of thought they answer it affects their biz, cos they have come across spoilt stupid customers that refuse to buy the product even if its just a mere matchbox or oil bottle if they are not given a plastic bag and some have the audacity to ask for 2 bags and not one! Hard to digest but I’m not surprised.

We must ask ourselves, what do we need so much plastic bags for? Why can we not carry the matchbox in our pockets if not hands? Why can’t we use the same plastic bag by washing and drying it, right never thought and who has so much time, such disappointing response.

For heavens sake why end up collecting plastic bags in the first place? Plastic bags are not money, we continue to horde plastic bags like money but it has no commercial value like coin or stamp collection.

I am sorry but rarely have i come across sensible sensitive people who either carry the same plastic bag / refuse plastic bags / use cloth bags that are environment friendly.

Personally, I abhor the use of plastic bags, never demand plastic bags from shopkeeper ‘s or vendors, carry my own bag ( I don’t shop if I forget to carry my bag ),request paper bag or wrap and try to the farthest limit to reuse whatever little plastic ironically finds it way eg. Bread packets, Oil and Juice bottles.

Recycling that’s being touted as the savior doesn’t work in many western societies then how do we expect it to work  for  in an already “relaxed” take for granted country like ours?

Most of the plastic that we use so freely  and discard thinking it will be recycled, many don’t even bother as to what happens, I’m upset to inform that the plastic that we discard in the end ends up in the earths water and soil and finally as poison on our plates, not bad and we deserve this as we are poisoning the planet and the planet gives it back to us!

Evolution

Can we not do anything about the plastic menace? Or are we just living off this planet as if we own the universe?

Frankly, it doesn’t need much of an effort to give up use of plastic bags, if I could do it and have been continuing for so many years, so can you!

Change is possible, it starts with us!

When turtles and birds choke to death on our plastic waste…

The use of plastic products dominates our daily lives. It is probably one the most versatile household items, used as carry bags, utensils, toys and you name it. It’s an easy-go-grab option when you step outdoors, for containing beverages and food items.

However this ‘glorious’ item you think is time and energy saving is the main reason for the death and extinction of a number of animals, birds and marine life, in particular. A large chunk of the discarded plastic items end up in the oceans. And all this at the cost of our convenience!

For the ones who feel that slight hint of guilt while using it, are in some way convinced that most of the discarded plastic products end up getting recycled, but this is hardly the truth. Only one fourth of it is recycled into other plastic products, again only to satiate the never ending human greed. The unrecycled waste is typically dumped in landfills where it never decomposes.

A Seattle-based photographer, Chris Jordan exposed a gut-wrenching picture of plastic products found in the stomach a bird species, called Laysan Albastross Chick found in the Mid-way Atoll, a stretch of sand and coral in the Northern Pacific Ocean. Most of these birds ingested bottle caps, cigarette lighters, toys, fishing lines and other garbage which ultimately led to their slow and excruciating death.

This group of Marine biologists from Costa-rica were appalled when they pulled out a 10-12 cm long straw out of a Turtle’s nostril. They removed the straw with a Swiss army knife.

Is it really worth the convenience that we keep harping about? All that one can do is to find ways to reduce dependence on plastic products by switching to more environmental friendly alternatives like reusable paper bags.

Think about this poor turtle the next time you mindlessly throw away plastic!

Poster

Additional Information :

Mankind is a plague upon this Earth; death and destruction are wrought in our wake with calculated precision and consistency.

Wherever we go, we bring with us the stench of plastic and waste and disregard.  The few of us who recognize our responsibility are overwhelmed, as is Mother Nature, by the horde of consumers among whom we live.

Those are harsh words, but issues such as these deserve harsh words, do they not?  Soft words are easy to ignore, easy to overlook.  But when one calls the entirety of humanity a plague, it begs a little more attention.

It can hardly be denied though that we are responsible for the poisoning of our world.

fish-plastic-5gyres

Further Reading :

India Uses Plastic Waste In New Road Construction

India Makes It Mandatory To Use Plastic Waste In Road Construction

The Terrifying True Story Of The Garbage That Could Kill The Whole Human Race

Ninety-Nine Percent Of The Ocean’s Plastic Is Missing

Plastic Oceans

Marine Microbes Digest Plastic

Plastic Debris In The Open Ocean

An Anthropogenic Marker Horizon In The Future Rock Record

Plastic Bags and Animals

Plastic Breaks Down in Ocean, After All — And Fast

The Trash Vortex

Choking the Ocean with Plastic

How to save India’s plastic-eating cows?

Albatroz

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