The evidence against the use of plastics for ANYTHING disposable is now overwhelming. Plastics are made from oil. Oil is a resource millions of years in the making and that has been largely used up in just 100 years. Once oil is out of the ground, no matter what you do with it, it is a problem. This can manifest as an oil spill – and the Gulf of Mexico is just the “Ben Hur” of something that goes on every day. It can be when we burn the oil and create air pollutants and greenhouse gas. It can be when we make petrochemical fertilizers and basically “mine” our farmland, leaving it dead and depleted after a few years. It can be in polymers and plastics, which are used for a very short time and then break into tiny particles that, asbestos like, dissipate throughout the environment causing damage in ways we will never know – that prize understanding will be for some distant future generations, who will also have the task of cleaning up or trying to live with our mess.
So how, knowing this, can we keep doing it? How come we are so perverse, so “easy going” in our treatment of the only place in the universe where we can have a life? What stops us using just a little bit of our personal energy and doing whatever it takes to NEVER buy throw away plastics? Because that is what it takes. That is what we need to do, much more than just “get through the day.” More than pay the mortgage, more than cope with another emergency. We need to understand very clearly the difference between what is urgent and what is important. It is important to stop using plastic throw away bottles. Really simple. It is important to take that understanding and slowly expand it to apply to other forms of plastic, and then other unnecessary but “easy” uses of oil. It is important to see, we are just the dust of this earth, made into humans for a little while, and then all our molecules will rejoin the dust again.
This is our earth. We are it, and we are killing it. It is important to stop this self abuse.