Plastic Pollution: The Cows Eat It Too

Here in India, the ubiquitous cows supposedly eat anything and they really do — from paper to banana peels. And in the stomach of one deceased cow, it was discovered that it had ingested about 35 kg (77 lbs.) of plastic.

Controlling plastic pollution has become a challenge in a country where previously, garbage was usually of an organic nature and decomposed on its own and things that could be reused were put aside. There is a "waste nothing" attitude that still prevails, but is at odds with the "modern" attitude of excessive consumerism — and the scads of discarded plastic in the city and rural areas are plaintive evidence of a lack of awareness and infrastructure to manage it.

However, in districts such as Nilgiris, in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, anti-plastic initiatives to raise awareness among the locals and tourists have made some progress. For instance, a five-year-long ban on plastics in the district asked that shopkeepers and customers avoid using plastic bags, in addition to providing future provisions for alternatives. But there remains a long way to go to transform the indifference of people.Plastic garbage continues to be deposited in Ooty Lake through the Kodappamund Channel and in places such as Kotagiri, another popular tourist destination, plastic bags were still offered.

Nilgiris Collector Santosh K. Misra expressed that the anti-plastic campaign should be more strictly enforced further developed so that the district could become a model for other districts. Many locals here feel that it is necessary to look forward to another rigourous five years of the anti-plastic drive in order to see a more proactive outlook locally towards plastic pollution.

Other towns in India have adopted similar measures, distributing jute bags, while also generating employment in the effort to go completely plastic-free.

But worldwide, the statistics of plastic use indicate that perhaps it's time for some change in attitudes elsewhere as well: typical annual plastic use per person in India is 2 kg (4.4 lbs); in Europe it's 60 kg (132 lbs) and in the US it's an astonishing 80 kg (176 lbs).

That's definitely some food for thought: where do you think your plastic goes when you throw it out?
::The Hindu

See also:: ::Reusable Bags

Tags: India

2014 Gift Guide

WHAT'S HOT ON FACEBOOK