BECAUSE it’s vacation season for many, it comes as no surprise that lots of people celebrate Easter Sunday on the beach. And cooling down and having fun amid the scorching heat need not be wasteful.
Specifically, going out of the city for the much loved excursions and picnics and refreshing water fun in the beach or swimming pool should not add to the plastics in the oceans that are mistakenly eaten by fish and other aquatic animals. The 40 kilos of assorted plastics inside the stomach of a beached whale found in the east coast of Davao City last month should serve as a wake-up call for intensified plastic pollution prevention.
So while we push corporations to design throw-away plastic out of the production system and replace it with eco-friendly and non-toxic alternatives, and while we urge the government to seek ways to curb single-use plastic, we, the people, should act to halt the further degradation of the oceans with plastic and chemical pollutants. Individual and collective actions to combat plastic pollution will help in cutting the amount of plastic waste that gets dumped into the oceans from land-based sources, which is estimated at eight million tons per year.
We need not wait for more whales and other marine animals to die because of the thoughtless production, consumption and disposal of single-use plastics which, if not reversed, could further endanger sea life.
Summer outings need not be synonymous with the bane of plastic, especially the single-use, that is polluting the oceans and harming marine life. Let us resolve to have plastic-free summer excursions as our families, workmates and barkadas troop to our favorite beaches and water parks. Let us begin today, Easter Sunday. It’s a good day to start caring for our environment.