Urgent Global Response Critical To Reducing Effect Of Plastic Waste On Health

The Telegraph: We need an urgent global response to the plague of plastic
David Attenborough, vice president of Fauna & Flora International

“…[A] report published jointly by … Fauna & Flora International and others highlights for the first time the effect of plastic waste on the health of the world’s poorest people. … A lack of waste collection in developing countries creates dumps of rubbish that provide ideal breeding grounds for rats, flies, and disease-carrying mosquitoes. … Better management of water and waste could lead to an estimated 95 percent reduction in the incidence of dengue. Many communities resort to burning waste releasing toxic chemicals and increasing air pollution. … [These toxic chemicals] increase the risk of diseases such as heart disease and cancer, respiratory ailments such as asthma and emphysema, skin and eye diseases, nausea and headaches, and damage to the reproductive and nervous systems. … This global problem can only be solved if there is an urgent global response. First and foremost, we need leadership from the companies and governments that are responsible for introducing plastic into countries where it cannot be properly managed. Multinational corporations … should be required to disclose the number of single-use plastic items they sell in developing countries and to reduce this by half by the year 2025. … Wealthy countries must also take more responsibilities for the waste they produce. … It is now time for governments, companies, and citizens to work together to find solutions to a crisis that is entirely of our own making, a crisis that now threatens the collective well-being of all the inhabitants, animal and human, that live on this planet” (5/14).