Friday, July 24, 2009

PLASTIC HAZARDS

Plastic is a synthetic substance produced by chemical reactions.Almost all types of plastics are produced from petroleum except a few experimental resins prepared from corn or other sources.Plastic is widely used in packaging materials or for preparing bags or containers.Its easy availability and cost effectiveness make it a popular choice for various purposes.However the hazards associated with plastics are plenty.

Hazards:
  • The "use and throw away" culture associated with plastics causes its improper disposal and is one of the cardinal reasons for unclean, unhygienic environment
  • Improper disposal of plastics causes blockage in the drainage system,unclean water and water borne diseases
  • They remain in the soil for long period and cause infertility of soil.
  • Certain plastics when burnt produces carcinogenic substances and Green House Gases
  • The littering of plastic reduces rain water percolating and causes low ground water level
  • Consumption of plastic by animals and fishes causes death or other health hazards.
  • Exposure to the chemicals in plastic produces toxicological effects on human health.The circulatory,endocrine, reproductive and urinary systems are most affected.
Remedies:
  • Educating people on proper disposal of plastics
  • More R& D activities to produce cheap bio degradable plastics
  • Subsidizing bags or containers made from traditional materials
  • Taxation on the use of plastics
  • Penalties for improper disposal of plastics
It must be noted that plastics have become part and parcel of the modern material culture.It has uses in almost every sphere of human activities.It is therefore almost impractical to do away with this valuable material.Thus the quest for bio degradable, environment friendly plastics has become the need of the hour.



1 comment:

  1. I agree with you...it is literally impossible to do away with plastic because of its numerous advantages. Also there are very few alternatives to plastic. I think the biggest problem is the collection of plastic waste. We need to ensure strict implimentation of plastic waste collection. Also in case of plastic bags, the thickness of plastic should be increased. Very thin plastic bags make it impossible to collect it and (as you said) causes blockage of drainage.

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