Plastics and Toxins
i) Plastic consumption
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How it works
ii) Recycling initiatives
i) Are there biodegradable alternatives
ii) Obstacles faced
i) Toxins in household items
iii) Toxins in clothing
4) Regulations on toxin production
5) Personal commodity used
Plastic is a synthetic material which is made from a wide range of organic polymers like polyethylene, PVC, and nylon, and could be molten and shaped while they are soft. Today, the world`s population has found plastics to be the most convenient in packaging and carrying off their luggage. People have ventured in the business to make the plastics due to the cheaply available resources. The production of these plastics materials has proliferated due to the high demand in the market. Some have taken the initiative to reduce the number of plastics that have been used by recycling them. Not all of them are recycled, so where do the others go? Others are campaigning for degradable alternatives, but they are facing lots of obstacles. The question is, do we humans know the threat these plastics have to us, plants wild and sea animals? This study will primarily major on the plastics and toxins, and how they are affecting our environment and the initiative taken to curb for future risks.
i) Plastic consumptionIn the last fifty years, the global production of plastics has rapidly increased. In the year 2008, the production of plastics worldwide was estimated to be 260 tons. Four years later, the production was found to shoot to 299 tons. At the end of 2015, the annual consumption was noted to have reduced to 297.5 tons. People like plastics since they are versatile, moisture resistance, flexible, light and affordable. These qualities make us have that voracious appetite which led to the overconsumption of the goods.
ii) Recycling initiativesSince plastic products are not degradable, they may live for decades. This ends up leading to land pollution. Others burn them up while others dump them in seas and rivers. This is completely unacceptable and has to be stopped. Companies have taken a new option to reduce the amount of plastic disposed off as waste. They have embraced recycling, and it is working. According to research conducted by Jenna Jambeck (2015), an environmental engineer at University of Georgia, only 9% of plastic is recycled. A whooping ninety-one percent goes without being recycled. They end up in massive landfills where it could take them a thousand years to decompose and leak pollutants into water and soil. Over hundred million tons of plastic debris is floating on oceans.
7) Biodegradable products
i) Are there biodegradable alternatives?Recently, there has been the development of biodegradable plastics. They have several benefits to the environment. First, since they are decomposable, the risk of polluting the environment are few. They are made from natural origins like plants, animals or micro-organisms.
ii) Obstacles facedCompanies that are making these biodegradable plastics are facing a lot of challenges. For instance, the cost of making them is too high as compared to the typical plastic. This makes it almost impossible to make enough for everyone. They will get rid of the natural resources, like trees, which is a harm to the environment. Again, for they have been made from different types of natural products, they tend to have different types of biodegradability. It will eventually decompose and leave behind toxic chemicals, and that is unacceptable as well.
8) Toxins These are a poisonous chemical substance which once induced into the body of a human or animal can cause severe damages, allergies or diseases. In the present day, almost everyone uses products that have toxic chemical components. A time it is completely inevitable to use them.
i) Toxins in household itemsThe house is filled with products that are made from toxic chemicals. These are the same which will, in the long run, cause chronic diseases like cancer. Some of them are perfumes, cosmetics, air fresheners, pesticides, toothpaste, soaps, medicinal drugs, dilutable juices, food seasoning products and plastic lunch boxes. A considerable percentage of these items are made of chemical which is unfriendly to the body and if used over and over again will eventually cause a devastating health problem.
ii) AlternativesMany of these products don’t have an alternative, and their alternative is just different brands of various companies. Again, we could not live without some of them as well, like toothpaste and medicine. The only thing one can do is to quit using the unnecessary ones.
iii) Toxins in clothing Marci Zaroff, a clean-fashion pioneer, argues that cloth manufacturers coat their products in very toxic chemicals at different stages, from coloring to finishing stage. We, consumers, have the belief that clothes made from synthetic fibers are quite safe. The materials are indeed filled with invisible chemicals. Then there are the sanitary towels. According to Jeff Clarkson (2014), the towels are made of chemicals which will melt under normal body temperature. It moistens the whole towel, and once it touches the body, it can lead to cervical cancer to women. There is great danger lurking in our clothes. Many do not have an idea of them at all. Despite the fact that clothes make us look good, they can as well claim one`s health in the long run which is unacceptable.
9) Regulations on toxin productionHealth is quite better than wealth. The government should instill some regulations on the companies that are making more money on things that are claiming people`s lives. An order should be issued on what to be manufactured and will be consumed by either eating, drinking or smearing. A bureau of standards should be established to exclude by testing the products that can have some toxic chemicals in them. Herbal and natural commodities should replace the place for chemically modified products. By so doing, life will be saved, and the lifespan of the people and the cases of unnecessary diseases will be minimal.
10) Personal commodity usedI have been using a perfume for quite some time now. It has dawned on me that the product is made up of many ingredients that are made up chemicals that are hazardous.A compound like a benzyl acetate is dangerous to the central nervous system. The skin has microscopic pores that will allow the entrance of the chemical. Since nerves originate right from the skin, they are to be in contact with the chemical and will transmit all that to the central nervous system where it will make it collapse. It can again cause an allergic reaction which can result in serious illness. It is stored in a glass container, which after using it up I will throw it away. It is not degradable so that it will be left somewhere on the ground. That is soil pollution which is not good.
Plastics have played a vital role in packaging. People have never been adopting proper disposing techniques. Therefore, they should be banned and biodegradable plastics used as alternatives. In our homes, everything we use has a hazardous chemical composition in it. These commodities are so harmful that the chance of contracting a malady from them are high. Some items are irresistible to use, and one will have to use them for survival. Others are merely luxurious. It is advisable to quit what seems to have an adverse effect yet could be avoided. Cloth companies should again try to neutralize the chemicals where the clothes are soaked. This will make them a bit less harmful to their consumers, who are us. By so doing, we will make the earth safe for us and for the generations to come.