Program: Cheche Lazaro Presents (Episode 12)
Presented by: Unlimited Productions, Inc. and ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs
Aired on: September 9, 2012 (ABS-CBN Sunday’s Best)
We all use plastic.
Plastic has become a vital and constant part of convenient modern life. At the top of the list is the ever-dependable plastic bag.
Somewhere between 500 million and a trillion plastic bags are consumed worldwide each year.
But all the plastic bags that we use are eventually thrown away. It piles up in the sanitary landfills, or as recent flooding would prove, are carelessly discarded and ends up clogging our drainage and waterways.
Each Filipino could produce 185 kilograms of garbage per year, 16% of which is plastic. A little gets recycled but most of it is just discarded. Studies reflect that less than 1% of bags are recycled. Environmentalists claim it costs more to recycle a bag than to produce one.
LGUs have zeroed in on the plastic bag as the primary cause of flooding in their jurisdictions. As a response, they have passed their own ordinances banning plastics.
To date, there are some 30 cities and municipalities that have either banned or regulated the use of plastic.
Apart from the threat to the environment, plastics allegedly pose a dangerous threat to health.Some allege that it contains harmful chemicals that can cause cancer or other diseases. These carcinogens tend to leech into the substance inside the plastic. Our dependence on plastic bags and Styrofoam as food and beverage containers is worrisome to anti-plastic organizations.
It’s a huge problem, banning bags is a start. But is it really the answer?
Cheche Lazaro follows the plastics issue: how it’s made, how it’s used and disposed of, and the future of the 60s “miracle material” amidst calls for it’s obliteration from our daily life.