• Stephan Busch

Lets use plastic straws in restaurants and everywhere as long as they are produced! Postpone the Oce


Hotels and restaurants and fast food chains announce proudly that they will not use plastic straws anymore. Should that make us feel any better? I thought we are used by now to pictures of fields of plastic garbage in the ocean and on beaches. Whales with a stomach full of plastic bags dying a slow death. Fish and all kinds of sea animals tortured by plastic garbage. Micro plastic in the food chain that is at the end also – finally proven and found - poising our bodies. It is easier to just explain our children that this is normal and they shouldn’t worry about using this colourful straws.

Sustainability?

No plastic straws anymore? Why? Because we have to prove to our guest and staff how much we care about the environment? It sells better? Let me share one thought about sustainability from Rafat Ali CEO of Skift who wrote about the truth he learnt about tourism. Here is what he learned about sustainability:

“That almost no one cares about sustainable travel, not the majority of the travel industry, and certainly not the travelers. Going green or caring about the environment are ego-boosting mantras taken out at the right moments and soon to be forgotten in the daily scheme of things.”

The truth about travel by Rafat Ali, CEO and founder of Skift, August 2018

Ocean clean up?

I always wonder about this companies that work on cleaning the oceans from plastic garbage. For sure a great job they are doing but why do they have to do it? Wouldn’t it make sense to stop plastic reaching the oceans? Wouldn’t it be more beneficial to stop the production of plastic at all? It will be difficult – look around you right now – wherever you are- and check how many plastic items are surrounding you right now. Look into your hotel, restaurant, kitchen, offices and storerooms. And just imagine this without all plastic that you see. But it is possible - just not wanted.

Thats why we need plastic!

The following companies can explain you why we need plastic and why we should continue using it including plastic straws!

Top 7 Plastics Manufacturers and the reason in USD why we should use plastic

· Dow Chemical. Global sales: $49 billion. ...

· Lyondell Basell. Global sales: $33 billion. ...

· Exxon Mobil. Global sales: $236 billion. ...

· SABIC. Global sales: $35.4 billion. ...

· INEOS. Global sales: $40 billion. ...

· BASF. Global sales: $63.7 billion. ...

· ENI. Global sales: $61.6 billion. ...

They also have companies like BPF ( British plastic federation) who help you understand that plastic is good for us . Here two of the top reasons from their webpage why we need plastic:

  • Use of plastic bottles rather than alternatives leads to savings of up to 40% on distribution fuel costs and saves on transport pollution.

  • Without plastics, packaging weight could increase by as much as 400%, production and energy costs could double and material wastage increase by 150%

If you need more of that - visit their webpage.

By the way they are also producing – out of plastic - this wonderful nets that collect plastic garbage.

You don’t want this plastic producers to go bankrupt, right? The poor people who will be unemployed – that’s the same reason why we don’t stop charcoal. To avoid this in every country politicians are sitting in the board of this companies and everywhere politicians and political parties receive great financial support from them.

You are to blame!

And its actually not them to blame if you believe the news but the general population is the polluter. You! You are to blame!

A recent headline in the Spiel in Germany read: “ Germans producing 4,5 Million tons plastic garbage next year”. So –it’s the German population that is doing it. Best is the sub headline: Industry will produce 4,5 Million tons and expects 16 Billion sales. This poor industry has to produce it because the population wants to produce 4,5 Million tons garbage next year. And they are willing to pay this companies 16 billion for it. How can they stop producing? Sounds like a product in demand.

Plastic straws are used to distract us!

So we introduce more sustainable programs in every company producing garbage. Supermarkets offering only three sizes of plastic bags and an alternative hard plastic ( can be used longer) and even paper bags. You should believe that we solved the problem. We should stop bothering people with this cruel negative reports and pictures. We can do with the ocean whatever we want. Worry about plastic straws? Here is a picture how radioactivity is spreading today from Fukushima ( not mentioned too often in the news). Here a little picture that shows the spread.

And did you forget , or did the news forget to remind you that the Allies after World War 2 dropped the following into the seas?

"1million metric tons of chemical weapons lie on the ocean floor—from Italy’s Bari harbor, where 230 sulfur mustard exposure cases have been reported since 1946, to the U.S.’s East Coast, where sulfur mustard bombs have shown up in Delaware"

By Andrew Curry, Hakai Magazine, SMITHSONIAN.COM , NOVEMBER 11, 2016

And what about the wonderful Maldives? White beaches and clear water. Where do they bring their garbage ? Where do the plastic straws go from the luxury bars and pool sides? Ever thought about it or just booked the beach and the cocktail with plastic straw?

BBC answers this question for you in an article. (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-16072020)

“Thilafushi, an artificial island used almost entirely as a garbage dump

7km (four miles) from the capital, is nicknamed Rubbish Island.The accumulation of garbage there has become so acute that it has begun spilling into its lagoon.The boats that bring rubbish to Thilafushi have started dumping it into the lagoon, many boatmen impatient at having to wait up to seven hours to unload it. Bluepeace organization has highlighted the problem of toxins from poisonous waste seeping into the sea.”

By Charles HavilandBBC News, Sri Lanka,8 December 2011

Here a picture of Thilafushi – a different Maldives paradise.

I would love a world without plastic and I admire people who try to fight it. But the solution can only come – as every change – from the bottom and the top. We should stop using plastic but I am scared to think where the big produces will dump it even if we don’t use it.

We should not be fooled or stay quiet if they want to make us believe that it is done by giving up the plastic straw. If it was a first step – good. Where is the first step from those who produced it? Where are the constant reports about Fukushima and the pictures constantly shown of Thilafushi?


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© 2017 by Stephan Busch