The EU Has Finally Found A Solution To The Uncontrollable Use Of Plastic

The EU Has Finally Found A Solution To The Uncontrollable Use Of Plastic

It's been estimated that by 2021, we will have used annually half a trillion plastic bottles.


Our consumption, as well as the production of single-use plastics, is out of control, with more than 8 million tons of plastic entering the Earth's oceans every year.


The growing problem threatens the planet's ecosystems in a dire way. It chokes natural habitats and harms wildlife that comes across it. Nevertheless, governments and companies around the globe aren't standing idly by as this issue worsens.


In a recent attempt to curb plastic waste, the European Union has launched an effort to make sure that all packaging throughout the continent is reusable or recyclable by the year 2030.


The decision comes hot on the heels of China, banning the import of foreign recyclable materials. EU officials are searching for ways to cut down on waste and plastic pollution overall, facing the chance that plastics could pile up as a result.


As part of that movement, Brussels has launched a plastics strategy which involves a €350 million (US$426 million) investment in plastics research.


Frans Timmermans, vice-president of the Brussels Commission, discussed the damaging effects of those plastics in an interview with The Guardian: "single-use plastics that take five seconds to produce, you use it for five minutes, and it takes 500 years to break down again."


The movement to reduce single-use plastics has now become a worldwide initiative. For example, the Asian food chain Wagamama has stated that beginning on Earth Day, April 22, they will no longer offer plastic straws.


They will instead offer a biodegradable, paper alternative upon request. The UK-based supermarket chain Iceland (not to be confused with the country) has also announced that, by the end of 2023, it'll either drastically reduce or eliminate the plastic packaging used with their brand-label products.


In December, approximately 200 countries signed a UN resolution to eliminate plastic pollution in the ocean.


As Timmermans told The Guardian: "If we don't do anything about this, 50 years down the road we will have more plastic than fish in the oceans."


He added that, regarding the use of single-use plastics, "it is an issue of mentality." Consumers will need to become accustomed to some of the products they've long relied on being phased out.


"[One] of the challenges we face is to explain to consumers that arguably some of the options in terms of the color of bottles you can buy will be more limited than before," Timmermans stated.


"But I am sure that if people understand that you can't buy that lively green bottle, it will have a different color, but it can be recycled, people will buy into this."


As a part of that growing effort, the European Union is assessing ways in which single-use plastics may be taxed. There've even been suggestions that this could be a significant form of budget support in the future.


These various efforts to lower and eliminate plastic pollution are still in their early stages.


Still, such initiatives - and their ability to encourage further action - are critical in cleaning up the oceans and preventing a future in which our planet is but a mere landfill.


Reference: Science Alert, Futurism

The EU Has Finally Found A Solution To The Uncontrollable Use Of Plastic The EU Has Finally Found A Solution To The Uncontrollable Use Of Plastic Reviewed by Κατερίνα Παπ on 9:39 AM Rating: 5

2 comments

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