Why use a cloth bag when retailers recklessly and generously hand out plastic bags of varying sizes considering -
- Plastic Bags save you the effort of carrying a cloth / reusable bag with you.
- Plastic Bags can be used as bin liners
- Plastic bags can be used to store veggies in the refrigerator
- If the plastic bag is that of a fancy brand – you get to let your friends , colleagues , neighbors and all in visual range know that you are able to afford the fancy brand in question. Carrying it again and again establishes beyond doubt that you are a person that frequently buys that brand = you have taste + the financial resources to do so.
-Carrying multiple bags shows you’ve been shopping = you can afford it.
Why use a cloth bag ?
- There are innumerable everyday objects for which we don’t have easily available / alternatives to plastic – toothpaste , toothbrush , razor , primary food packaging (e.g oil , pulses , bread , biscuits), plastic water bottles , kitchen containers . These few items alone are enough for an average urban resident to be responsible for a hillock (if not mountain ) of plastic in his/her lifetime. At this point in time we don’t have easily alternatives (or even answers) for some of these everyday items that come in plastic. With a bag at least you have a CHOICE.
- Plastic does not bio-degrade . At least we won’t be alive to witness it . The plastic bag you use is going to hang around on the planet long after we are gone.
- Lives of birds , animals, marine life are threatened by the plastic remnants . They die due to ingestion of plastic . Those that survive undergo mutation . Would you like it if consequences of the thoughtless actions of another species affected your health and the duration of your life ?
- The plastic we throw away enters the food chain of human beings through animals , birds and marine life.
- We already have the challenge of dealing with depleting natural resources , pollution, consequences of climate change, terrorism, poverty . From being stuck in the problem end of the equation we need to move to being part of the solution. Governments alone are not responsible for the state of the planet . All of mankind is . No government forces us to use plastic , to leave the tap open , to drive around pointlessly burning fuel , to not reach out to someone whose life we can impact .
The changes needed to make this a sustainable planet need us to participate . Not just by clicking answers on some internet poll. Participate by making tangible , consistent changes.
Your actions matter. Every action matters.