My first post on the topic “sustainability” brings me straight to the issue of plastic waste. It’s no longer a secret that plastic is harmful to our environment. Surely you’ve already heard of the documentary “Plastic Ocean” on Netflix (if not – I’d recommend it) or seen all the posts on Instagram with the #zerowasteresolutions for the New Year. But are you aware of how incredibly harmful plastic really is?
We’ve produced more plastic in the last ten years than over the last century together and all the plastic we’ve ever made still exists until today due to the extremely slow decomposition of plastic (500-1’000 years; with the exception of the small amount that has been incinerated). Every year 1 million birds and 100’000 sea animals die from our plastic waste, because they confuse the relatively large parts with food. Also the smaller particles, so-called microplastic, are highly dangerous and pollute the drinking water. The list goes on and on and you can find all the information online, but to make it short: Our plastic consumption is a threat to the whole planet.
And by the way, not just the “other countries far away” are contributing to the issue: Here in Switzerland we annually have 780’000 tons of plastic waste, of which only 80’000 tons are recycled. Not exactly a favourable balance. Although we have no direct access to the sea, Swiss plastic can still pollute the oceans, since most of the waste from the mainland reaches the sea via sewers and rivers from the interior. In addition, almost all Swiss rivers and lakes contain microplastic particles, which carry harmful bacteria or contaminants and can for example cause inflammation in shellfish.
Well – do you feel like breaking up with plastic, too? I’ll definitely try it and will share my experiences here with you. I’m looking forward to interesting discussions and a step in the right direction.