Plastic bottles and the huge recycle problem
Let us have a conversation today about plastic bottles and plastic bottle recycling. Let us start with a question. Do you drink bottled water? Another question is, have you decreased or increased your consumption of bottled water recently? If so, why?
When plastic became popular I was thrilled at the simplicity and the prospect of long lasting products. No more broken glass. A few short years later I want my glass containers back and I go out of my way to avoid the use of plastic. I do it for my health the health of my family and for future generations and their quality of life.
I have been astounded at the problems and challenges this new industry has caused. It is wonderful and it is a plague that can torture us for thousands of years.
Did you know that it takes thousands of years for your plastic bottle to disintegrate, and as it does it releases poisons that can cause serious health problems? Just imagine that water bottle you throw away will still be around a thousand years from now. How many generations will that little indulgence effect?
To make my point, I know it is a good thing to leave your great, great grand children generational wealth, your eyes that dance when you are happy, your artistic ability to draw, write music or play a musical instrument. Is it really acceptable to leave your great, great grandchildren that plastic water bottle you threw away moments ago? Do you get the point?
Plastic bottles are made from petroleum and are not meant to be reused. As a result tossed away plastic over run our land-fills, streams and oceans. There is heap of plastic containers the size of Texas floating in the Pacific Ocean. Fish feed on this plastic as it disintegrates we feed on the infected fish. What a nasty vicious cycle. There is something wrong with this situation.
It is a well-known fact that when polycarbonate plastic water bottles are exposed to heat from your automobile or in a hot storage warehouse it decomposes and the plastic leaches phthalates and bisphenol A (BPA) into the water. BPA is a synthetic estrogen that can cause problems to your hormonal system. Scientist say that small exposures can increase your risk for type-2 diabetes, prostate and breast cancer and many other chronic degenerative diseases. The FDA has banned the use of BPA in baby bottles. If you must use plastic bottles use BPA free and reuse as many times as possible.
As I look back I am curious how I got the idea that bottled water was safer for us than tap water. At one time I drank bottled water because it was convenient and I knew I should drink more water. In the back of my mind I also thought bottled water was somehow safer and healthier. Was I fed a lot of nonsense or was I willing to believe what big business was telling me.
The real truth is that tap water is safer than most bottled water. Many bottled waters come from local sources and in municipalities where the bottled water is manufactured there is cause for water shortages in the area. For every one gallon of water manufactured two gallons of water is wasted in the purification process. Most use reverse osmosis. This process removes the minerals, potassium, magnesium and calcium from the water. Your body desperately needs minerals to function properly. You the consumer beware that most bottle water is tap water in disguise.
Are you aware that in the United States bottled water industry used up to 54 million barrels of oil to produce and transport plastic bottles in 2007? That is enough fuel to operate1.5 million vehicles for a full year.
The outlook is not all bad, there is some good news. In some parts of the world plastic bottles are banned and in other parts of the world plastic bottles are used to build homes. Yes, I did say plastic bottles are used to build homes. Instead of the plastic ending up in landfills, streams and oceans they are filled with sand and trash and used as bricks. What a novel and interesting idea? Just think, these homes should last at least a thousand years.
Say yes to recycle plastic bottles.
Recycling is up by 28-30% recently. Check with your local town resources for recycling centers. If none are available and if you are passionate about this start a center locally.
Some products made from plastic bottles to recycle are: Oil based paints, clothing, automobile car seats, electronic parts and composites to build bridges and buildings. This is one way of many to cope with the challenges of plastic bottles. Do you have any ideas you would like to share with the world?
Bottle water is extremely expensive compared to the same amount of tap water. As a fact, bottle water cost thousands of times more than tap.
This information is to make you think when buying your next 6 pack or 24 pack of bottle water. Is it really a good deal for you or does it serve the manufacturer? Something to think about.
Knowledge and education is power.