what's your opinion on plastic pollution - is it something we should care about? Watch

notdyls
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#1
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Plastic pollution is a problem that appears to have no end in sight - we are producing more plastic waste than ever before. What's your opinion on this? Have you done something to reduce your plastic waste that other people should do too? Or do you think it's not as big a deal as it's made out to be?

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/lif...w-you-can-help

I wrote this article outlining some of the stats around the issue and how you can help to combat it.
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Retired_Messiah
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I feel like we should care, but at the same time people in western nations have started obsessing over their plastic consumption when the biggest problem is places like Indonesia not having anything close to decent waste disposal systems, making a lot of garbage needlessly end up in the water. Me buying bottled water occasionally isn't a comparable turtle murdering mechanism.

Speaking of... could we not just ban the sale of bottled unflavoured water? Normal stuff just comes from the tap smh...
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Decahedron
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It is a massive issue but I haven't actively gone out of my way reduce plastic I just don't use it if I don't need to.
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notdyls
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(Original post by Retired_Messiah)
I feel like we should care, but at the same time people in western nations have started obsessing over their plastic consumption when the biggest problem is places like Indonesia not having anything close to decent waste disposal systems, making a lot of garbage needlessly end up in the water. Me buying bottled water occasionally isn't a comparable turtle murdering mechanism.

Speaking of... could we not just ban the sale of bottled unflavoured water? Normal stuff just comes from the tap smh...
I can see where you're coming from, but I think that companies are making it worse - a big part of the issue is products being sold in individual plastic pouches. I'm not sure if it's for convenience or if they can't afford to buy bigger quanitities at once, but there is almost an element of companies enabling this to happen. Do you think that us, being in the Western world where most big firms are based, could do something about it?
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Retired_Messiah
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(Original post by notdyls)
I can see where you're coming from, but I think that companies are making it worse - a big part of the issue is products being sold in individual plastic pouches. I'm not sure if it's for convenience or if they can't afford to buy bigger quanitities at once, but there is almost an element of companies enabling this to happen. Do you think that us, being in the Western world where most big firms are based, could do something about it?
Sure, ban bottled water lmao

Or just invest in this dude: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/scienc...stic-packaging
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Acsel
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(Original post by Retired_Messiah)
Me buying bottled water occasionally isn't a comparable turtle murdering mechanism.
This is by far the best sentence I've read all week.

Generally agree, there's a limit to what we can do if it's not us causing the problem. I think it's important that we care, alongside all the other pressing issues. But I also think there's a limit on what can reasonably be done. Personally my plastic consumption is very low as is and trying to drop it any lower probably isn't the best use of my resources.
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notdyls
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(Original post by Acsel)
This is by far the best sentence I've read all week.

Generally agree, there's a limit to what we can do if it's not us causing the problem. I think it's important that we care, alongside all the other pressing issues. But I also think there's a limit on what can reasonably be done. Personally my plastic consumption is very low as is and trying to drop it any lower probably isn't the best use of my resources.
You’ve captured it perfectly. I certainly don’t do everything possible to reduce my plastic consumption, but I think that raising awareness and telling people about it is the best thing you can do. A single person can only reduce their consumption by so much, whereas when more people hear about it hopefully they do something too.
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HighOnGoofballs
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Anything that harms the environment is a concern.

Equally, I do think that people tend to lack some required perspective when championing their eco-friendly crusade for the climate. We as a nation, are already pretty environmentally friendly, producing but a very small percentage of the worlds global carbon emissions. Radical solutions that hurt consumer choice like banning plastic bottles and what-not are not what's needed right now when behemoths like the USA and China collectively emit more carbon than the rest of the world combined. They need to sort their sh*t out before we focus for on the technical aspects of our own emissions.
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modifiedgenes
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The solution is to incinerate all plastic waste and make electricity from it.

Next question.
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Emma:-)
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(Original post by Acsel)
This is by far the best sentence I've read all week.

Generally agree, there's a limit to what we can do if it's not us causing the problem. I think it's important that we care, alongside all the other pressing issues. But I also think there's a limit on what can reasonably be done. Personally my plastic consumption is very low as is and trying to drop it any lower probably isn't the best use of my resources.
I agree
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Retired_Messiah
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(Original post by modifiedgenes)
The solution is to incinerate all plastic waste and make electricity from it.

Next question.
The gases coming off that would probably be not-great.
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notdyls
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(Original post by Retired_Messiah)
The gases coming off that would probably be not-great.
It’s all a trade off - if we burn the waste then we produce a load of harmful gases but get electricity. If we don’t, the plastic will be causing damage either in the ocean or in landfill as mentioned in the article. The other option would be recycling, but that’s very energy intensive and produces air pollution in the process too. Personally, I think the only long term solution is to reduce the amount of waste being produced.
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modifiedgenes
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(Original post by Retired_Messiah)
The gases coming off that would probably be not-great.
High temperature incineration of all municipal solid waste is the only way forward, we cannot continue to simply bury waste endlessly in holes in the ground.

No, burn it and make electricity, what is the difference between that and burning endless amounts of imported natural gas to make electricity as we do today in a big way??
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Retired_Messiah
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(Original post by modifiedgenes)
High temperature incineration of all municipal solid waste is the only way forward, we cannot continue to simply bury waste endlessly in holes in the ground.

No, burn it and make electricity, what is the difference between that and burning endless amounts of imported natural gas to make electricity as we do today in a big way??
"It's no different than this other thing we do that releases harmful gases, so there's no reason to not add to that"

hm can't say I'm feelin that one
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modifiedgenes
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(Original post by Retired_Messiah)
"It's no different than this other thing we do that releases harmful gases, so there's no reason to not add to that"

hm can't say I'm feelin that one
Burning natural gas releases carbon dioxide. No getting around that fact, so does burning plastic, other emissions can be scrubbed very readily.

It's electricity from something we would otherwise dump in a hole.
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