Tens of millions of tons of plastics end up in landfills, streams, and oceans every year. The microplastics released from the waste have been found in the shrimps’ stomachs and the distant snow of Antarctica. In March this year, representatives of 175 countries agreed to start writing a global agreement that would limit the explosive growth of plastic pollution.
US National Parks without Plastics to 2032
National parks include 480 million acres of federal land that the government will protect from disposable plastics. Home Secretary Deb Haaland announced that a new Home Office regulation would end the sale of disposable plastic products in national parks and other public lands in the United States within the next ten years.
“As managers of national public lands, including national parks and national wildlife refuges, and as an agency responsible for the protection and management of fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats, we are in a unique position to do something better for our Earth,” said Haaland in the statement.
The Minister considers it the duty of the Ministry to take measures that will reduce plastic waste, including food and beverage containers, bottles, straws, cups, dishes, and disposable plastic bags in protected areas.
Paper Straws in British Caffés
British restaurants and caffés have replaced plastic straws with paper ones. Stores in GB charge plastic bags, and authorities have banned the production of products that contain plastic microspheres. In April, the British government introduced taxable limits on the amount of non-recycled plastic packaging that manufacturers can use in a product. They want to encourage companies to use recycled materials.
The European Union has identified several items as the most common disposable plastic waste on the coast, namely bags, straws, plates, tampons, and dishes. As a result, the ban on using these products came into force last July in the 27 EU member states.
“Of course, in countries where you can no longer buy these items, you will see much less on the beaches,” said Piotr Barczak, director of waste policy at the European Environment Agency, a network of environmental organizations. “I would not impose responsibility or blame on the people. It is up to the authorities to regulate manufacturers and those who market them. It is up to law enforcement to control it. “
Even separate chains embarked on the fight against plastics. Beverage companies are replacing plastic rings for packaging several pieces of beverages with cardboard. Some world hotel chains have discarded disposable miniature bottles of washing gel and shampoo and installed dispensers with a pump instead.
Featured photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash