We all know that plastic pollution is a huge problem. WWF report that plastic is chocking our oceans and wildlife - 90% of seabirds have plastic in their stomachs. The Guardian report that microplastics are now found in human blood too.
If we stay on our current course, it's set to get worse. Jo Royle, founder of the charity Common Seas predicts that plastic production will double by 2040.
We have a lot to gain by addressing this issue:
'Fixing this problem means fewer emissions, cleaner water, more breathable air, and a more resilient world'
- The Carbon Almanac, 2022
My plastic Free Life have published a guide to 100 steps towards a plastic free life, which you can find here.
This Forbes article outlined 4 steps businesses can take to reduce plastic:
1. Challenge yourself to spend a day without touching plastic.
2. Track how much virgin plastic your business consumes in one month.
3. Make a plan on how to start reducing your usage.
4. Share your plans publicly to ensure you're held accountable.
As well as reducing one's negative impact, cleaning up rivers and oceans can be very helpful. River Clean Up is just one of many organisations that do great work in this area.
While both individual and business actions are imperative, urgently needed, and will make us feel more empowered, like so many environmental issues, systemic change is needed.
The United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said:
“We must work as one, governments, companies and consumers alike, to break our addiction to plastics, champion zero waste and build a truly circular economy.”
“Together, let us shape a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable future for all.”
We can all do more towards that future - World Environment Day is as good as any day to up our game.
1.https://www.wwf.org.uk/updates/plastics-why-we-must-act-now?utm_source=Grants&utm_medium=PaidSearch-Brand&pc=AVN014007&&&gclid=Cj0KCQjwj_ajBhCqARIsAA37s0w9UGV4FoDZWE8zO2rJ5_m1bZxKS-YyIO0bLjgft2RnDXcXoSbVMZkaArslEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds 2. 2. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/mar/24/microplastics-found-in-human-blood-for-first-time
4. 'The Carbon Almanac’, Penguin Business, 2022