Published On : Sun, Sep 12th, 2021
Featured | By Nagpur Today Nagpur News

What Is The Social Cost Of Plastic Production?

If the 2019 stats are considered to check the pollution caused by plastic along with its clean-up costs one will be horrified to find the numbers as high as $3.7 trillion which is similar to the GDP of India. Considering the same, WWF has warned the people that this cheap material is contributing to a huge burden for both the environment and the economy. The alarm is increasingly high about how the plastics are entering the pristine environment even of the remote location as microplastics. Even though the creation of plastic looks cheap, the price fails to embed the entire cost which one needs to spend throughout the plastic life cycle. 

International Action Is The Need Of The Hour

An international action needs to take place collectively as if plastic production goes unchecked, it can cost the world $7.1 trillion by 2040. The different factors included finding the actual cost includes the health impact, greenhouse gas contribution, waste management as well as the reduction in the economic services of both the land and water ecosystems. Different departments and employees of Government Jobs should give a reduction of plastic a priority to improve the situation at both local and national levels. Approximately 8.3 billion tonnes of plastics have been produced since the 1950s and 60% of these plastics after being used are thrown into the landfills. The assumption that the plastic will remain only in the landfill is very naive as tiny fragments of plastics are now recently being discovered by the scientists inside the fishes which are being housed by the deepest recesses of the ocean. The plastic debris is creating havoc for marine mammals by killing more than 100,000 mammals each year excluding the death of millions of seabirds. The grim situation is such that there are no signs of slowing down the crisis caused by plastic pollution. 

More Plastic In The Ocean 

According to the UN Environment Programme, currently, the planet Earth is drowning in plastic pollution. This seems true as each year, 300 million tonnes of plastic waste are proposed. To fix the same, the International Union for the Conservative of Nature has presented a motion to end plastic pollution by the year 2030. The issue will be further discussed next year in Nairobi during the UN Environment Assembly. Commenting on the same, Berangere Abba, France’s minister in charge of biodiversity has said that if the entire world does not act to reduce this crisis by the end of 2050, more than fish, the ocean will be filled with plastic. 

COVID-19 Has Increased Reliance On Plastic

To make the matter worse, just as students rely on Sarkari Result to check the result of their government exams, people from all around the world relied on plastic during COVID-19. For instance, a report by AFP stated that each month, approximately 129 billion disposable masks are being used in the world. The disposable plastic masks which everyone is clinging on are made out of metal, elastic and polypropylene plastic material. Once used these masks which are thrown in the garbage bins eventually enter the landfills and further, litter the water bodies too. 

In fact, several environmental groups have discovered that the masks, latex gloves and other protective gear which are used to save oneself from COVID-19 have already begun contaminating the rivers and the seas. Last year, more than 1.5 billion masks were found in the oceans. The masks have contributed to marine plastic pollution by adding an extra 6,2000 tonnes of masks. 

With such stats, one should focus on wearing masks that are reusable instead of going for the disposable masks to ensure that their contribution to plastic pollution is the least. Also, it is important to use sustainable products and ensure a sustainable lifestyle to take care of the environment. For instance, instead of asking for a plastic bag while shopping, one can carry their own jute bag to fill the purchased items. Another way of reducing plastic pollution is to ensure that non-plastic items are used instead of plastic ones. For example, one can go for glass jars instead of plastic jars and if plastic is required to be used, one-time plastic should be strictly avoided to ensure that the production and waste generation of plastic is reduced.