Our wasteful plastic habits are harming animals all over the world. While we often look towards the damage being done to the oceans and marine species as a result of our trash, we shouldn’t forget that all animals – including us – are suffering at the hands of this ubiquitous material.
From plastic bags to plastic forks and even plastic clothes, it’s pretty hard to escape the reign of this material. In fact, 300 million tons of it come into circulation every year. And while efforts are made to recycle, sadly, a whopping 85 percent of the world’s plastic is not. That means it’s instead sent to landfills. Unfortunately, this is not always where plastic stays. While 8.8 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean every year, it certainly spends some time on land, where animals are innocently nibbling away.
One animal that’s harmed by plastic pollution on land is the camel. The photo below shows a giant “planet” of plastic found in the stomach of a dead camel. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it’s estimated that 50 percent of camels die from plastic ingestion. This is becoming a fatal reality in countries like the UAE, where the curious camels nibble on plastic tossed in the desert by campers and tourists. It’s not uncommon to find rocks of calcified plastic weighing up to 60 kilograms.
This image may finally convince people that it’s time to stop tossing our plastic and start looking for long-lasting, tangible solutions to our shameful habits. It’s time to start thinking about what happens to the plastic bag or utensil once we toss in the garbage can – you never know, it might end up in a camel’s stomach.
What Can YOU Do?
While efforts are being made to remove debris from the oceans, improve recycling systems, and innovate barriers to prevent plastic from getting into waterways, we can all take action in our daily lives to stop plastic waste at the source.
If we all make an effort to identify where we use plastic and actively look for alternatives, we can drastically cut down on the amount of plastic pollution that finds its way into the oceans.
As the leading organization at the forefront of the conscious consumerism movement, One Green Planet believes that reducing everyday plastics from our lives is not about giving up anything or sacrificing convenience, but rather learning to reap the maximum benefit from the items you use every day while having the minimum impact.
Let’s #CrushPlastic! Click the graphic below for more information.
Image Source: Treading My Own Path/Facebook