‘Our Blue Planet’, the final episode of the phenomenal Blue Planet II series, turned our attention to the irreversible effect humans are having on the world’s oceans, by showing us the dire impact of our plastic waste.
The episode marked the shocking truth and realisation of humans’ negative impact on the ocean. Viewers were faced with birds unknowingly feeding their baby chicks plastic and mother dolphins exposing their new-born carves to pollutants through their contaminated milk.
“We are at a unique stage in our history, never before have we had such an awareness of what we are doing to the planet and never before have we had the power to do something about that. Surely, we have a responsibility to care for our blue plant. The future of humanity and indeed all life on earth now depends on us.” - David Attenborough
The episode was another wakeup call that we need to take action on the plastic crisis we’re now living in. So, how can we do our part to reduce the amount of plastic that enters the ocean? Here’s 5 steps that every single one of us can do in our everyday life:
Reduce your use of plastic
How many of you get a plastic bag every time you go to the supermarket, unthinkingly pop a straw in your drink at the bar or buy a cup of coffee with a plastic lid on your way to work every day? Guilty. Reducing your single-use plastic is an easy and effective way to decrease your overall plastic usage. Reusable shopping bags, a reusable coffee cup, a reusable wattle bottle – all of these are easy peasy alternatives and make the world of difference.
And when you do use single-use plastic, recycling is absolutely key. This helps to reduce the pollution caused by waste, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting the environment. Find out more tips on how to recycle here and check out Earth911.org recycling directory.
Buy things second hand
Not only is this is a whole lot cheaper, but buying second hand items also eliminates packaging, not to mention the waste and pollution of plastic products which are still completely functional.
Buy boxes, not bottles
Buy any food products, soaps, laundry detergent etc. in cardboard boxes instead of plastic containers. Cardboard is much easier to recycle and doesn’t have as much of a negative impact on the environment, taking around 5 years to decompose as oppose to plastic, which can take up to 1000 years to fully disappear.
Spread the word
Many of us are not aware of the effects our plastic intake is having on the environment and on our futures. So, be sure to chat to your friends and family about the simple steps we can all take to reduce the irreversible actions of plastic pollution and instead become part of the solution.