Ban plastic bags in Trinidad and Tobago
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Reasons plastic puts us all at risk:
- Plastic is broken down into smaller pieces (microplastics) that are consumed by marine life which are eventually consumed by humans.
- Microplastics contain harmful chemicals and can absorb other chemicals. When microplastics are eaten by animals they enter our food chain with these chemicals, so eventually we ingest these chemicals. This video shows the moment plastic enters our food chain.
- Biodegradeable plastics are not a cure for the problem. The link is to an article published by the UN which basically says that biodegradable bags can only break down under very specific conditions which are not met most of the time.
- The plastic in our oceans comes from many everyday sources.
- Whole plastic bags can kill animals. We have all seen the pictures of turtles, whales, seabirds and other animals found with plastic bags in their stomachs.
- Economic damage. We know that plastics and other forms of litter contribute to flooding etc.
There are lots of other ways plastic can harm the planet.
Here is a list of plastic bag bans and taxes already in effect around the world.
Here is an article from Yale discussing the merits of plastic bag taxes versus incentives for reusable bags. They found that a tax on plastic bags is better for reducing waste than incentives for using reusable bags.
In the meantime hopefully we can all help by bringing our own bags with us when we shop and asking retailers to cut down on unnecessary packaging.
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