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International Plastic Bag Free Day
July 3, 2022
International Plastic Bag-Free Day, celebrated on July 3rd, is a great opportunity to reflect on how many plastic bags we use daily. Global pollution of the planet’s ecology with plastic waste is a big problem that continues to grow. About 500 billion plastic bags are still used in the world every day, most of which are not disposed of in any way.
For a long time, people did not use disposable items. After the industrial revolution, plastic became a reliable and affordable resource. Plastic bags were created in large quantities during the Second World War, but this was done secretly and for the British army. In 1965, Celloplast of Sweden introduced the polyethylene shopping bag to the world, and over time, it quickly replaced bags made from other materials. In 1979, plastic bags appeared in the United States.
Sailor and scientist Charles Moore in 1997 found the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, one of the largest accumulations of plastic waste in the world’s oceans, posing a real threat to marine life. Plastic bags floating in the water kill the turtles that eat them because they mistake the bags for jellyfish. Bangladesh was the first country in the world to ban plastic bags in 2002. Here, bags played a key role in blocking drainage systems, leading to catastrophic flooding. Soon bans on plastic bags appeared in Italy, South Africa, China, Australia, Rwanda, and several other countries.
International Plastic Bag Free Day was born to encourage people to look for safer alternatives to plastic. This national day is part of the Plastic-Free Movement, which began in 2016 and has over 1,500 organizations as members.
- According to the EPA, human-made plastic will take at least 1,000 years to decompose;
- In 2017, India banned the sale of not only plastic bags, but also plastic cutlery, cups, and plates;
- Today, plastic makes up 75% of all marine litter.
How to take part
Plastic bags and other plastic items have become so firmly established in our lives that we do not notice how we buy them. On International Plastic Bag Free Day, you should try to reduce the use of plastic bags, or at least reuse them, or take them to a recycling center. Draw the attention of other people to the problem of plastic pollution. Watch the films A Plastic Ocean and Bag It with friends and family.
When is International Plastic Bag Free Day celebrated in 2022?
International Plastic Bag Free Day is observed on July 3 each year.