IT IS POSSIBLE TO GET RID OF PLASTIC AND WE MUST DO IT
It is possible to get rid of plastic and we must do it. Environmental Science and Technology magazine estimated that every year we ingest around 50.000 microplastics. That number can increase twice as much if we also consider those that we inhale. Under attack is, once again, the food and all the plastic packaging that wraps it and contaminates it.
The protagonists of this contamination are the plastic bottles. According to the report of the Beverage Marketing Corporation, Italy is the country that owns the consumption record with 178 liters per citizen. We can see very easily how much plastic is “popular” when it comes to food and we can see it when we go groceries shopping. We can’t find salads that are not wrapped up in plastic and tomatoes that are not inside a plastic food container.
Also we can find single artichokes or cucumbers that are wrapped up in plastic. Or snacks that are wrapped up in several plastic packaging even for single portion snacks.
Where does all the plastic go?
Of the 300 million tons of plastic that is produced every year, 8 million tons of plastic waste are poured into the oceans. It is as if every minute a truck full of plastic pours plastic into the ocean. The problem related to plastic waste is also present in the Mediterranean, where Legambiente’s Goletta Verde has measured “a density equal to 58 plastic waste per square kilometer of sea, with peaks of 62 in the Tyrrhenian Sea”.
The plastic in the sea not only is pollution but also a vehicle for microbes and other organisms that are added to chemical contaminants. This intercontinental geographic migration becomes a vehicle for the spread of polluted microplastics from potentially pathogenic invasive exotic species that expose us to the risk of losing biodiversity and new diseases.
What do we risk?
The use of plastic contaminates the food we eat, and it exposes us to the unaware ingestion of phthalate and bisphenol A, plasticisers and additives that are classified as endocrine disruptors. These substances have been found in the urines of Italian children and teenagers from the Institute of health thanks to the study LIFE PERSUADEDthat was able to connect the levels of plastics observed in urines with infant diseases (early puberty, thelarche and obesity). According to the data analysed by the researchers of the Institute of health the 100% of the children who underwent the analysis confirmed the presence of phthalates in urines and the 76% revealed the presence of Bisphenol A.
What to do?
It is necessary as soon as possible to raise awareness regarding the risks related to plastic and to find an opportunity to change in order to remove the plastic from the products that we consume every day at home, at work and at school. We have several possibilities to remove the plastic or to better manage it in order to avoid its irresponsible disposal. We can individually start changing our eating habits or involve more people in this journey in order to have a greater impact on environmental sustainability.
#PIUINFORMA and #FOODFORPLANET program
These programs allow any entity (company, university, schools etc) to reduce its environmental impact and to spread a healthy and sustainable life style inside the chosen entity.
The program goes around the food system that can be modified depending on health and sustainability criteria that allow to obtain concrete results: reduce the use of plastic, improve waste management, increase the consumption of healthy food and with less environmental impact, adopt a life style that is more in line with the World Health organization, to reduce and to improve wastefulness management, to develop and to spread a culture that promotes people’s and the planet’s health.
The program allows to create several steps where the implementation is certified, by adopting sustainable solutions that spread virtuous and contagious behaviours. Foodforplanet is a practical way to bring health to our planet and to people, by spreading the culture of good, healthy and sustainable food.