•   
  •   
  •   

Health & Fit Resurgence of single-use plastics has environmentalists worried

17:51  01 august  2020
17:51  01 august  2020 Source:   cbsnews.com

Coronavirus: launch of two studies on the persistence and resurgence of symptoms

 Coronavirus: launch of two studies on the persistence and resurgence of symptoms Loss of smell would persist in 10% of cases. In some cases, symptoms persist for several weeks. © afp.com/ALAIN JOCARD A member of cell The new coronavirus, which has been shaking the world for almost five months now, continues to raise questions.

The proliferation of single - use plastic around the world is accelerating climate change and should be urgently halted, a report warns. “It has become an inescapable part of the material world, flowing constantly through the human experience in everything from plastic bottles, bags, food packaging

In Europe and the US, the plastic industry has used the threat of coronavirus contamination to push back against bans on single - use plastics . In eight years, US environmentalist and social media star Lauren Singer had never sent an item of rubbish to landfill.

The resurgence of single-use plastics during the coronavirus pandemic — N95 masks, plastic gloves and plastic shopping bags that were once banned in several cities and states but have returned out of necessity — has environmentalists worried about future effects.

US-HEALTH-VIRUS-ECONOMY-RETAIL © ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images US-HEALTH-VIRUS-ECONOMY-RETAIL

Many of those items are now beginning to show up in fields, lakes, rivers and oceans around the world, and they're adding to the roughly 300 million tons of plastic waste the United Nations says is produced every year.

Recession: Americans are still going hungry even as the economy reopens

  Recession: Americans are still going hungry even as the economy reopens The economy is starting to pick up as coronavirus restrictions are lifted, but millions of Americans are still jobless and unable to afford food. © Al Drago/Bloomberg/Getty Images A volunteer wearing a protective mask and gloves boxes food items as a part of the Commodity Supplemental Food Program at the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington in April 2020. Although US employment grew by 2.5 million in May, roughly 21 million Americans remain out of work, and many are still in need of assistance -- including some who have never had to turn to a food pantry before.

Environmental experts stress that single - use plastics can still harbor viruses and bacteria they pick up What is clear, however, is that single - use plastic bans have become a growing threat for the Single - use plastic items are in high demand.Credit Kristopher Radder/The Brattleboro Reformer

Single - use masks, gloves and bottles of sanitizer shielding us from the spread of Environmentalists such as Stokes fear discarded masks and gloves will add to the ongoing fight against plastic pollution in the sea. Plastic waste on the rise. But it's not all good news. One of the worst environmental

"99% of plastics is made from fossil fuels, and we know that they are a major contributor to climate change," Natalie Fie, head of City to Sea, a British nonprofit dedicated to campaigning against pollution, told CBS News' Roxana Saberi.

Fie and her group are promoting ways to avoid single-use plastics during the pandemic.

Aside from PPE and plastic bags, the rise of single-use plastics can be seen in the increase of delivery packages wrapped in plastic, as well as coffee shops such as Starbucks temporarily pausing service for reusable cups over safety concerns.

At the same time, the plastics industry is lobbying for more rollbacks to single-use plastic bans, arguing that single-use plastic is the safest material to protect people from COVID-19.

As More Americans Opt for Road Trips, Ford Aims to Become Carbon Neutral By 2050

  As More Americans Opt for Road Trips, Ford Aims to Become Carbon Neutral By 2050 The company aims to use 100 percent locally sourced renewable energy for manufacturing plants and eliminate single-use plastics from operations. In their annual stability report, released on Wednesday, the Michigan-based manufacturer detailed their plans for sustainability and becoming more environmentally conscious. Ford will focus on three areas that make up 95 percent of its carbon dioxide emissions: its facilities, its supply base, and customer vehicle use — with the last component comprising of approximately 75 percent of the CO2 emissions.

Just swapping single - use plastic for compostable alternatives won’t do much if none of them end up in the compost. Environmentalists say that it’s a major step. But it might not necessarily work as intended: If it results in just shifting to compostable plastic , without a massive investment in

A lot of the personal protective equipment, the masks and gloves and other medical equipment, is plastic , and much of it is being thrown carelessly away.

Plastics Industry Organization CEO Tony Radoszewski has called on the U.S. Department of Health to "speak out against bans on these products as a public safety risk."

Fie said science disputes that claim.

"We've found and read from scientists and epidemiologists that actually it's not been proven to be any safer than reusable is," she said.

The World Health Organization also stated the coronavirus can survive on plastic for up to three days.

For people like Emily Stevenson, who has spent over a decade cleaning up trash on the shores of South West England, the toll the coronavirus pandemic is taking on the environment is already present.

"I think we're definitely finding more plastic bottles. And well, more plastics in general," Stevenson said.

Sh found 171 single-use plastic gloves littered the area around just one local supermarket.

While Stevenson said she is hopeful about the fight against plastics in the future, she warned that the PPE she finds littered on the shore could have unforeseen consequences.

"Quite often they'll get saturated when it's in the marine environment, so the gloves will get filled with water, or the face masks just get so sodden that they will just sink to the bottom," she said. "And once the plastic and this debis is on the seafloor, there's no telling how long it's going to stay there for."

Coronavirus: London restores the fortnight for all travelers coming from Spain .
© DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP Masked passengers arriving at a London airport on July 10, 2020. The United Kingdom has decided to reintroduce from from July 25 the fortnight for tourists from Spain. A measure taken following a dramatic spike in Covid-19 infections, particularly in the northern region of Catalonia. From our correspondent in London, Muriel Delcroix. The decision was taken following an resurgence of the coronavirus epidemic in Spain .

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks
usr: 1
This is interesting!