Drowning In Plastic Essay

813 WordsMay 8, 20114 Pages
Drowning in Plastic It’s hard to imagine life without plastic. It’s everywhere: covering our food, holding our purchases, protecting our loved ones, saving patients in hospitals and floating along our waterways and oceans. The thought of living in a world surrounded by toxic chemicals and pollution is a thought which many would rather not think about. Plastics have revolutionised the world in which we live, but with dire consequences. The production of these toxic-filled substances continues to lead the human race on a path of natural destruction; with thousands of animal sea-life dying annually from plastic consumption. It's time we wake up to the fact that our oceans are in need of critical help. How did the plastic get into our oceans to begin with? The oceans are enormous but they are not infinite. Today, as in the past, oceans are being treated as giant disposal areas for all types of refuse (plastics, tins, bottles etc.) with the belief that the enormous size of the oceans would be enough to dilute and break-down any materials we put into them. Most of the waste we produce on land eventually, in one way or another, reaches our oceans, either through deliberate dumping or from run-off through drains and rivers. But, sadly, now we have to reap the ramifications of our choices. With an average of 6.3 million kilograms of trash being pumped into our oceans every year, it won't be very long until they reach breaking point. One of the most common pollutants in our oceans is plastic. In the United States, it has been estimated that two million plastic beverage bottles are used every five minutes and that marine litter now contributes sixty to eighty percent of plastic. Estimates for plastic shopping bags range from five hundred to a thousand years to breakdown. This is potentially devastating in that plastic is often mistaken for food by marine animals,

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