Body, Mind, Spirit Magazine

The Plastic Society

By Superinspire @nenadciric


We live in a global plastic society. Literally. Just look around you, it’s everywhere. From our computers to children’s toys and most food packaging. While this petroleum-derived material (patented in 1907 by Leo Baekeland, a Belgian-born chemist) certainly has its use in the modern world, it is also very known what affect its production has on our health and environment. Italy for example has banned supermarkets from selling classic plastic bags which we were used to seeing drifting through the wind on a daily basis.

Those same bags, which have been substituted with bio-degradable ones in some European countries, may take even hundreds of years to decompose in a landfill. Worldwide, people still use more than 1 trillion plastic shopping bags a year (source: Surfrider Foundation). But an even bigger problem are the plasticbottles considering that:

* In the U.S. more than half a billion bottles of water are sold every week! Enough to circle the globe twice. (source The Story of Bottled Water).

80% of the plastic bottles from bottled water consumed in the U.S. end up in landfills. (Surfrider Foundation)

So what can each one of us do to reduce the consumption of plastic?

We can certainly start by buying less bottled water and use more those useful home water filters or simple water filter bottles (like Brita). If you need to carry a small bottle in your bag don’t throw it away when it’sempty. You can refill it and use it again. The same goes for plastic bags. If a store worker offers you a bag and you don’t really need it because you have space in your handbag, then don’t take it. I for example got used to saying, before even paying an item, “I don’t need a bag, thanks”. And most importantly: Recycle. One positive aspect of plastic products is that they can almost always be recycled and turned into something new. If you live in a country where recycling is not wildly spread and your street doesn’t have separate containers for plastic, paper, metals, you can still collect your plastic separately and take it once a week to the nearest recycling center. I know, it takes time and effort, but we can agree that our Planet deserves it. Right?

Photo: “Plastic Fantastic” by Tomaas

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