Single Use Plastic | examples of single use plastics | uses of single use plastic

Single use plastic

Single use plastic is such type of plastic item which are used only once before thrown away. It has become one of the biggest causes of pollution. Approx. half of the plastic waste generated every year is coming from single use plastic. Due to single use plastic lakhs of sea animals are dying every year. Let’s learn in detail what is single use plastic, what are examples of single use plastics and use of plastic etc.

What is Single Use Plastic?

Single use plastics are disposable plastics commonly used for packaging. These are intended to be used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. Polythene bags, food packaging bags, plastic bottles, straws, cups, cutlery etc. are examples of single use plastic items. These are primarily made from fossil fuel-based chemicals (petrochemicals).

Uses of Single Use Plastic

There are many uses of single use plastic and we have become addicted to it.  Single use plastic items are so cheep and convenient that it has replaced all other materials from the packaging industry.  Most commonly used single use plastics are polythene bags, food packaging bags, plastic bottles, straws, cups, cutlery etc. In addition to these, important items such as surgical gloves, or straws for people with disabilities are also made of single use plastics.

Why to eliminate Single-Use Plastic

Our addiction towards single use plastic is having a devastating impact on our oceans, our wildlife, environment, and our health. It is human tendency to prioritize convenience without considering long-term impact of anything. Day by day we are getting addicted to single use plastics. Our reliance on these plastics accumulates waste at a staggering rate and causes environmental pollution as well as water pollution. Today, approx. 300 million tons of plastic are produced each year due to plastic waste. This huge quantity is nearly equivalent to the weight of the entire human population.

Most of the single use plastic thrown out, enters into waterways by rain or travels via storm drains into rivers and streams. In the water bodies, it leeches out the harmful chemicals and clogs the waterways.

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Every year countless animals are killed due to swallowing the single use plastic. Many marine animals including Seabirds, fishes, turtles etc. are found to have fishing gear or plastic bags in their stomachs. These plastics, pierce the organs of animals and block the digestive system and causing death. Due to huge waste of single use plastic, marine water has become adulterated with plastics. Sea creatures are swallowing this seawater soup instilled with toxic chemicals from plastic decomposition and die.

How to eliminate single use plastic

Collective efforts towards avoiding single use plastics can be helpful in eliminating single use plastics. Just turning your habits like carrying your eco-friendly bag while going to buy vegetables can spare the environment tons of single use plastic each year. Here are some more tips using it we can eliminate single use plastic in a large scale;

  • Always take a re-useable bag when going for shopping. Clothes or paper carry bags can be used as these are natural and biodegradable
  • Avoid individually packaged goods, like snack packs and try to buy in bulk.
  • Drink coffee or tea in a re-useable Cup
  • Carry your own water bottle from home and refill it, avoid buying water bottle
  • Use reusable cutlery (like wood, or metal chopsticks) for sustainable eating on the go. Aluminium and glass containers should be promoted instead of plastic
  • Encourage people to avoid using single use plastics and tell them of the harmful impact of singe use plastic.
  • We should replace single use plastics gradually with better sustainable options.
  • Government should put restraints on the manufacturing guidelines so that the number of litter-prone plastics can be reduced.

Q & A on Single use Plastic

Below are some important questions about single use plastic with short answers:

What is single use plastic items?

Ans: Single use plastic are such plastic items which are used only once and then thrown as waste.

Examples of single use plastics

Ans: Polythene bags, food packaging bags and items, plastic bottles, straws, cups, cutlery, straws etc. are example of single use plastic items.

Also Read:

Global Warming

Natural Disaster

Importance of Trees

Electric Vehicle: Future of Transport

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