Plastic bags are quite popular because these are light weight and thus easy to carry. Besides, unlike cloths or paper bags, we do not even require purchasing these as we go shopping. These are economical and given freely by the shopkeepers on the purchase of goods.
Problems caused by plastic bags:
Plastic bags are non-biodegradable. Thus, disposing them is the biggest challenge they break down in to small particles and enter the soil and water bodies. However, they decompose.
2. Deterioration of environment
They are destroying the nature owning to their harmful effect. Plastic bags have become a major cause of land pollution today. The waste plastic bags are thrown into the landfills where they take almost around 500 years to decompose. These bags are light in weight and can be easily carried by the wind to another place and wide.
3. Harmful for animals and marine Creatures
Animals and marine creatures consume plastic particles with their food. Plastic cannot be digested and gets trapped in their intestines.
4. Cause of illness in human
The production of plastic bags releases toxic chemicals that can cause serious illness among those involved in their production food packed in plastic bags can also cause health hazards.
5. Clogged sewage
Waste plastic bags often run down with water or are blown by the wind and get trapped in the drains and sewers clogged sewers and drains can be threat to the human beings as well as animals especially during rains.
We need to understand the problem being caused by the easy to carry plastic bags and stop their use. It is time to our government to take strict measures to ban plastic bags.
Written By: W. E. M. R. S. E. Ekanayake
Edited and Design By: L.C. Kalansooriya
Coastal & Marine resources Management Department
The Ocean University of Sri Lanka