Plastic is light, inert, resistant, durable and economic.Its defects are the incomplete impermeability to gases and water vapor and the low resistance to abrasion but the worst defect is the it’s not biodegradable. A plastic bottle can remain in water, or on the ground, from a minimum of 100 years to a maximum of 1,000.
Marinella Melis, University of Cagliari
The sea drowns in the plastics. The sea inspired sailors and poets, writers and musicians. Charles Baudelaire, the author of “Flowers of Evil” sees in the sea a correspondence between restless spirits, who reject the bonds and the ocean waters. This is why he wrote: “Free man, always the sea you will love“. But is the hand of that “free” man who is killing sea and its creations.
But now let’s talk about data. According to dossier entitled The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics presented at the 48th edition of World Economic Forum in Davos, our waters, in thirty-five years, could contain more plastic than fish. The data is alarming. This is the environmental scourge of our times. Every year, eight million tons of plastic stay undisturbed in the depths of the oceans. The accumulation created a new ecological niche that scientists call “plastisfera”.
“Bottled water: Italian anomaly”. This is the name of Legambiente and Altreconomia dossier about production of plastic bottles. Consumption in our country continues growing, with a production that varies between 7 and 8 billion bottles a year. According to the report water is a big business for bottling companies. This is a turnover of around 10 billion euros a year. In addition, thanks to the distrust of tap water, Italians are among the largest consumers, second in the world only to Mexico. A bad habit that keeps up an economic system made of workers, families and companies. “The data reported in the report – states Giorgio Zampetti, general manager of Legambiente – show that in Italy bottled water still guarantees a billionaire business, which has been steadily increasing in recent years, as well as consumption. At the base of talian record there is the false myth that is better and more controlled than that of our tap and above all a cost of the raw material (water), for those bottling, is practically nil: 1 thousandth of euro for each liter bottled“.
A sea of plastic. Reducing plastic consumption, wherever possible, is a commitment that each of us should take to support circular economy. In inquiry entitled “Un mare da salvare“, some journalists tried to make some comparison: it is as if every minute for 365 days, a garbage truck poured all its contents into the water. Tirelessly. If there will not be a change of route, with a decrease in production and a greater attention to disposal, in 2050 the trucks will become four per minute. On that date, in terms of weight, the oceans could contain more bottles than fish. Among the most polluted waters are those of the Mediterranean.
Microplastics in cosmetics and plastic objects are harmful to marine species or birds. Who has not been invaded by a deep sense of discomfort seeing the image of a seahorse clinging to a cotton bud? This picture of Justin Hoffman, marvelous and excruciating at the same time, is titled “Sewage Surfer” and was among the finalists of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2017, a prestigious contest that collects and selects the best of nature photography to world level since 1964.
The british challenge and the chinese borders. Great Britain moves its first steps by banning microplastics in cosmetics. “The seas and oceans of the planet – had said resolute british Environment Minister – are among the most precious assets we possess“. But it wasn’t enough. The British premier Theresa May has presented the 25 year plan for environment that includes: creation of lanes of bulk products in supermarkets, extension of 5 pence to all disposable bags, provision of funding for innovation in the recycling of polymers and funds dedicated to the fight against pollution in developing countries. Behind this environmental crusade, however, we could hide the ban on import of China as many as 24 categories of waste (including plastic) and raising the quality standards of some categories of waste. But it is clear that not all ills come to harm. This could be an opportunity to sensitize citizens to reduce waste, to pay attention to which products to buy, to use as long as possible durable goods and to abandon the disposable, concept increasingly permeated in our society and in our style of life.
Everyone can do something. VMEngine’s team know something about because in its headquarters, in the historic center of a wonderful town, they smell the sea. Well, thanks to the sensibility of Fabio Cecaro, CEO at VMEngine and expert in Cloud Computing, they decided to abolish the plastic bottles and they have a practical steel bottle, washable that can be used forever. VMEngine’s team gave it to their customers because only by sharing ideas can we make sure that the message arrives loud and clear.