Plastic Free Nagapattinam Mission
Why are Plastic Bags a Problem?
- They are harmful to the environment.
- Takes 1000 years to decompose into smaller pieces, which seep down into the soil and release chemicals, which eventually reach the water supply.
- Kills animals in the water when they eat plastic bags thinking they are jellyfish
Builds up in landfills
- Manufacturing of plastic bags is harmful to the environment because nonrenewable resources are used (petroleum and natural gas). The manufacturing process itself uses toxic chemicals, pollutes the atmosphere and consumes energy.
- The transportation of the billions of plastic bags produced annually means further energy consumption, largely in the form of more petroleum.
- Stores give out unlimited amounts of plastic bags for FREE even when the costumer doesn’t really need one
Cost in terms of energy and manpower is greater than the value of the material produced
SHOPPING CULTURE IN EARLIER DAYS
Before the advent of poly-bags, people did shop, buy things, bring eatables from the market, and did the same marketing as is done now. How did they did it? The raw material for the bag was decided by its usage. Cloth bags for lighter items, Gunny bags/Jute bags for voluminous and heavier goods. The cost did not justify use and discard attitude. These bags were washable and reusable lasting for six months to a year.
Apart from causing soil pollution, sewage blockages, cattle and mainly marine creature’s mistake plastic for food directly or indirectly, blocking digestion and possibly causing starvation. About 44 percent of all seabirds eat plastic, apparently by mistake, sometimes with fatal effects. And 267 marine species are affected by plastic garbage—animals are known to swallow plastic bags, which resemble jellyfish in mid-ocean. Apparently according to one research plastics at oceans are actually degrading and releasing toxic chemicals and causing water pollution.
Is it not enough that we already burn tonnes of oil and destroy the delicate balance of nature; Is it not enough that our power hungry nature has pushed many a species to extinction? The excuse that the common man really don’t realize what he is doing to the Eco system is no longer acceptable. While a few of us burn ourselves day in and day out working to protect our fragile planet, the rest of us are happily dumping her with tonnes of garbage, and not just any garbage , the most toxic non-biodegradable, plastics. Let us be very clear here, we have only one earth and only one chance. The Earth will not take this hands down. She is raging, and when her rage will hit us with full force, there will be no light of the day for the human race anymore. Already the production of plastics uses up a lot of fossil fuels and is endangering marine life. And if the lay man does not wake from his long slumber of sweet dream and face the reality, I am afraid there is no help for the turtles and other marine birds that have been affected directly by plastic pollution.
It has been observed that the animals eating the bags sometimes die. Plastic goes into the ocean which is already a plastic infested body of water. Fish and other marine species in the water ways, misunderstanding plastic garbage as food items swallow them and die.
Plastic is made of petroleum, a valuable but non-renewable & harmful fossil fuel.
Fenceline communities, countries of the Global South, and communities of color are impacted most dramatically by single-use plastic at all stages of its lifecycle, often being directly targeted because of their limited voice and access.
Plastic pollution extends beyond borders and across sectors.
Reference : https://plasticpollutioncoalition.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115002099788-Defining-the-System-of-Plastic-Pollution
Tamil Nadu Govt. G.O.s regarding Plastic Pollution
G.O. (MS) No.84 (PDF 0.98 MB)
G.O. (MS) No.82 (PDF 464 KB)