Effects of Plastic Bags on Our Ocean Ecosystems
Plastic is used in many ways in our daily life. Plastic comes to us as carry bags, bottles, unbreakable soda bottles, disposable razors, diapers and shampoo bottles, gift wrappers etc. We get plastic goods very easily and anywhere. Most of the time we get plastic bags when we go for shopping. We get plastic bottles with cold drinks, fruit juice, soda etc. Sometime we reuse them; sometime we throw them in to a waste bin.
There are so many people who buy plastic water bottle, lunch box and pencil box for their children because those things are good looking and children get attracted very easily.
But what are the future effects of these plastic products?
Rain will come and wash away these plastic goods in to drains and make our roads clean. And then it will be flowed out in a river. After reaching in the river plastic products will float in the river for many days and streams will take them one place to another. And finally this garbage will be reached in to the ocean through sewer systems.
But did we ever want to know what is going to happen when these plastic bags will come to contact with the sea!!!
Plastic particles look like foods for marine animals. Plastic seems to be jelly fish, fish’s eggs etc. to fish, turtles, seals and sea birds. Plastic is not biodegradable like metal, jute, cotton, paper or any other natural materials. It takes extremely long time to be biodegraded. Plastic floats on the sea for long time and then breaks into small
particles. Because of this, fish, sea birds or other marine animals take them as their foods. Parent marine animals feed their babies with these plastic particles by mistake. And it is not good for their health because these ingested plastic particles stored in the stomach of the sea birds and marine animals. This reason reduces their food consumption. And that is why most of them starve for day after day and then die.
Many marine animals such as fish, turtles, seals and sea birds are entangled in plastic debris and die because of suffocation and drown. Some of them suffer from severe laceration and ulcers.
Both of seals and whales can get caught in translucent nets and drown when diving for food.
It was estimated that at least 267 different species have suffered from entanglement and ingestion of plastic debris and over 400,000 marine mammals have been destroyed annually due to plastic pollution in oceans.
We use plastic goods because of their low price, availability, look etc. We never think of those other living beings who are balancing our ecosystem. We are left them to die because of our own sake, our own well being.
But don’t be so relaxed... We are not out of the danger from the harmful effects of using plastic goods. In my next column I am going to tell you about the Harmfulness of Using Plastic Goods For Human Being.
So what should we do?
We have to reduce the uses of plastic.