A world without plastics is almost unimaginable today, though their widespread introduction only began in the mid-1950s. Since then, the world has seen an exponential production and development over the past decades.
UN Environment estimates that 8.3 billion metric tons of virgin plastics (newly produced plastics from petrochemical feedstock such as natural gas or crude oil, that have not yet been converted into products), have been produced to date.
8.3 billion metric tones is 18,400 times as heavy as the tallest building in the world – Dubai's Burj Khalifa.
Also, noting with deep concern that a whopping 91% of plastics produced worldwide is not recycled, it is appropriate to encourage all 'MUNPlaneters' to pay heed to the call for proper plastic management.
This is an opportunity to reflect on how we respond to the call to reduce the impact of our own plastic solid waste on the environment, and be bold to take the first step.
The first step would involve making personal choices about your use of plastics: Reducing, Reusing and Recycling.
You could support efforts to reduce the use of plastics by considering actions such as:
- avoiding single-use, disposable plastic such as straws, cutlery and bags,
- replacing plastic cups and food containers with biodegradable paper solutions,
- choosing products with less packaging,
- replacing plastic water bottles with glass bottles and
- taking own reusable glass takeaway containers to food outlets.
And now, a few things to ponder over as we strive to leave no one behind!