Just look around you – Plastics are everywhere and an indispensable part of ‘toxic consumeristic modern life’. Food packaging, take away food containers, water bottles, phones, cars, laptops, refrigerators, washing machines, cosmetics, toothbrushes, waste bins, kitchen storage – and those plastics bags we seem to get every time we buy ANYTHING. At least in Bangalore, plastic shopping bags are banned and most big retailers abide by the rule.
Every piece of plastic ever made still exists today and has an enormous impact on the environment and our health. Most of us are unaware that plastic from plastic drinking water bottles can leach into the water we drink and interfere with our hormones and cause cancer.
Try as we may, it’s not possible to completely sever ties and break up with plastic altogether but there are some lifestyle changes that make a big difference in reducing the amount of disposable plastic in our lives.
The 2018 UN theme on World Environment Day is ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’. I’ve been commissioned by VR Bengaluru to create a massive interactive art installation titled ‘Beware Of The Plastics’ which depicts data about plastic pollution and key dos and donts. Viewers can interact with the installation by writing down their own environmental messages and take a pledge to ‘Beat Plastic pollution’.
Did you know that it takes 500 years to degrade for a disposable diaper? Plastics not only end up in landfills but choke the environment with toxins.
I’ve found a few conscious easy steps to cut down the amount of plastic I use. Have a look:
1. I always carry my own cloth bags for shopping
2. I carry my own refillable metal water bottle
3. I refuse to drink beverages served in single-use plastic cups
4. I choose products in cardboard packaging over plastic bags and boxes when shopping for grocery
5. I use only paper straws
6. I use herbal soaps and cosmetics as much as possible
7. I never use single-use spoons and forks
8. Switch from disposable diapers to cloth (I know this because my friend Sneha Thakkar makes reusable cloth diapers at her company Fig-O-Honey. She and I are two of Top 100 entrepreneurs whose start-ups are chosen for a year-long incubation by IIMB as part of Women Startup Program 2018) https://figohoney.com
My World Environment Day installation titled ‘Beware Of The Plastics’ is on view at VR Bengaluru. Come by and together let’s take a pledge to beat plastic pollution and reduce, reuse and recycle.