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The non-profit Plastic Free July Basis behind the worldwide motion Plastic Free July, a month-long problem encouraging people to take small steps to remove plastic from their each day lives, has launched its ‘My Plastic Motion Counts’ marketing campaign to remind Australians that their actions depend for extra than simply avoiding waste.
Australians are the most important customers of single-use plastic waste on the planet, producing a median of 59kg of plastic waste per individual a 12 months. Simply 15% of the plastics consumed has been recovered. In accordance with the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), 84% of plastic is distributed straight to landfill. Plastic could also be polluting the planet, nevertheless it’s additionally polluting our our bodies too, with a analysis research estimating that every individual ingests about 250 grams of microplastics a 12 months— a couple of bank card’s weight in plastic each week.
In a 2020 survey, the non-profit discovered that two-thirds (66%) of contributors discovered it tougher to make adjustments to cut back single-use plastic as a result of COVID-19, with well being measures rising the utilization of single-use plastic for a lot of takeaway objects, in addition to a surge in demand for PPE resembling single-use face masks, gloves and bottles of hand sanitizer.
The sense of urgency to show the tide in opposition to plastic air pollution has by no means been higher. “Our waste disposal and recycling efforts are preventing a tide of latest plastic waste that’s being created day-after-day,” stated Rebecca Prince-Ruiz, founder and govt director of Plastic Free July and the Plastic Free Basis.
“If we solely begin to handle plastic waste as soon as it’s within the bin, we’re not going to repair the issue. As a substitute, ‘My Plastic Motion Counts’ celebrates the facility all of us need to dwell our values and defend our well being, our communities and our surroundings via waste avoidance and discount. Each individual may be a part of the answer, and each motion counts in direction of this shared aim.”
Regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic, contributors of the 2020 Plastic Free July problem every lowered 21kg of waste and collectively contributed to 900 million kg of plastic waste prevented worldwide. In accordance with the Plastic Free July Basis, 85% of contributors made adjustments which have change into habits past July.
“There are hundreds of thousands of Australians doing the appropriate factor by selecting to refuse single-use plastics. Over the past 12 months we’ve seen our contributors staying COVID-19 secure concurrently nonetheless taking steps to cut back hurt to the setting,” stated the Plastic Free July founder.
“Now’s the time to hitch in and make a distinction by wanting on the plastics in your life, merely look within the bin, have a look at the litter that’s on the road round you, and choose one or two alternate options resembling selecting reusable cloth masks or espresso cups, selecting unpackaged produce or switching to a bar of cleaning soap. Collectively our plastic motion counts in direction of the well being of our planet and other people.”
Whereas the worldwide plastic-free motion focuses on the demand aspect of the plastic air pollution equation by encouraging particular person motion, one other non-profit organisation, Break Free From Plastic focuses on the availability aspect – the supply of the plastic air pollution. Compiling information on the world’s worst company plastic polluters, the organisation works to make sure that companies are taking duty for his or her position in flooding the market with plastics and that they aren’t externalising all the prices to society and governments. “Corporations should urgently rethink and redesign how they ship merchandise to their clients,” its 2020 model audit report states. “The present enterprise fashions of FMCG corporations are primarily based on advertising and marketing and promoting their merchandise in single-use plastic packaging, and conveniently passing the burden of managing their throwaway packaging onto customers, taxpayers and native governments.”
Plastic Free July, which started with a Fb group of 40 mates in Australia, has made large strides within the international combat in opposition to plastic air pollution, with an estimated 326 million contributors from 177 international locations pledging their assist in 2020. Roughly three million Australians participated within the Plastic Free July problem in 2020, with extra anticipated to hitch in on the problem this 12 months.
Eager to cut back your single-use plastic consumption? Try our put up: Plastic Free July: 10 Ideas for a Month With out Single-Use Plastic.
To be taught extra in regards to the Plastic Free July motion, go to www.plasticfreejuly.org.
Cowl picture by Karolina Grabowska.