Plastic bags – what’s not to love about them. They are cheap and lightweight enough for us to put anything in them, from food to clothes and so much more. Plastics are more or less a part of us, objects we find it hard to part with. What we probably don’t know are the greater negative impacts they have on the environment.
I have lived in an urban space long enough to know the rights and wrongs of plastic use. Yes the ban has taken place but, I still see no difference. Why? you ask. Look at our streets, the river sides, trees: there is lots of plastic bags in circulation and plastic waste all over. The problem is there is no proper system of enforcing the ban and to manage plastic waste already in our surroundings.
The ocean family is as much affected. How many documentaries have we seen where turtles and birds are being choked by plastic bags? This is because the turtles mistake the bags to be jelly fish, only to be starved for days since the bags are not digestible. The plastic bags and bottles clogs every available space making it hard to manoeuvre around. Their non-biodegradable quality should be enough for us to put ourselves and the environment in consideration.
Here’s some information you probably did not know
Plastic is chlorinated and ends up releasing harmful chemicals into soil and into surroundings, and from our geography class, the processes of seeping gets going, and the chemicals end up being part of the groundwater and any other source of water. Animals and plants depend on this water, which poisons numerous species.
We have a lot of environment themed days marked out on our calendars every year. We could have people with the right knowledge and skills go and sensitise the masses – from students at primary school to the small scale traders on the streets – on the dangers plastic poses to humans and wildlife. It will be worth it.
Rwanda has set the pace and is ranked at the top in Africa when it comes to dealing with plastic pollution. Kenya can follow suit and contribute to making mother nature smile. I don’t know about you, but I am already inspired to make a change and make it count. You may not see it now but a little goes a long way. Stay green minded.
Join our plastic campaign, let’s inspire action in the ones around us to be mindful of plastic use!