It requires some 450 years for plastic to be destroyed naturally. Our country accounts for over 13 tons of plastic waste in just one year. And whether we like it or not, Malta has to start following European directives. Failure to do so will result in the imposition of sanctions.
It was announced at the start of this year that with effect from 1 January, the importation of single-use plastic has been stopped. For this reason, Popolin has checked out alternatives to plastic which are available on the market, as well as their affordability. Michelle Piccinino, Chief Executive of the Environment and Resources Authority, explained that as with every other sector, the market will have to adjust. Piccinino added that a number of alternatives to single-use plastic already exist, and many of these are affordable. An example is cotton buds made of cardboard, wooden cutlery and cloth shopping bags. These products are frequently a one-time purchase, and although investment in the products is often more costly than ordinary plastic, they have the benefit of use and re-use for many years. In this manner, plastic waste is better controlled, and discarded waste will be biodegradable.
At an international level, it is estimated that every year over 100,000 turtles and some 0ne million birds die as a result of discarded plastic. The result of such measures will become apparent in the coming years, and every person’s efforts and sacrifices will be of benefit to our children and future generations.