The plastic problem is one problem that may have been discussed and talked about quite a few times but if only actions were as emphatic as the talks and debates that have been held around it perhaps things might be a tad better. However, due to its accessibility, plastics today are part of the exemplifying produce of modernity,
These two -plastics & modernity- are deeply intertwined as it is virtually almost impossible to spot a product today that doesn’t have plastics attached to it. This is as a result of its high durability and flexibility, they are rots and corrosion free making it extremely perfect for utility and continuous production.
Due to this, the overuse of plastics has become a real menace in the environment today, with almost 80% of the plastics produced ending up in landfills and open seas causing destructive outcomes on the environment and marine life.
In addition, with a generation that is so used to on-the-go life, it’s not looking like we’re making sustainable progress because lifestyles require simple disposable products like soda bottles, plastic bags, and the likes to sustain it.
On an annual basis, about 380 million tonnes of plastics are produced and 40% of that are single-use plastics. Turning attention to marine life, each year over 8 million tonnes of plastics are disposed into the ocean destroying simultaneously ocean ecology and marine life.
In Nigeria, from 2010-2020 the number has almost doubled with Nigeria producing almost 520,000 tonnes of plastics in 2020.
This one of the highest in Africa, and the damaging front to this fact are the very few numbers that get recycled, consequently, allowing the plastics problems to thrive unfettered in the country.
So even though there are problems in recycling and disposing, major problems still lie in the production as we have already made enough plastics to encircle the world more than four times. Perhaps, these problems might be business opportunities to leverage.
Now, reliable research reveals that there are now tiny bits of plastics in our foods, waters, and the air we breathe, of course, we will not be able to see these plastics with our eyes, but there are a lot of microplastics that we take into our bodies due to how polluted the environment is.
Answers to these problems require everyone’s support because the plastic problem is of a global scale with global consequences.
Enforcing plastics control regulations to considerably reduce the number of plastics that go out in production, and also commonising the habit of the 3Rs; Reuse, Reduce, Recycle will begin a new trend of a more sustainable generation that knows how to take care of the environment and themselves.
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