WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY – 5th JUNE

World Environment Day Banner

Following on from Fair Trade Fortnight, Fashion Revolution Week and World Fair Trade Day, Qwerkemporium is looking forward to World Environment Day on Tuesday 5th June.

Who Is Hosting the event this year?

This year India will be hosting the event and the theme is #BeatPlasticPollution. This message will be going out to governments, industries, communities and individuals with the aim of exploring sustainable alternatives to and reducing the excessive consumption of single use plastics.

What’s the message?

If you can’t reuse it, refuse it. Watch a short video here

It is fitting that India will be hosting this event as it is emerging as a leader in recycling with one of the highest recycling rates in the world.

Global Plastic Pollution by the Numbers:

  • Up to 5 trillion plastic bags used each year
  • 13 million tonnes of plastic leak into the ocean each year
  • 17 million barrels of oil used on plastic production each year
  • 1 million plastic bottles bought every minute
  • 100,000 marine animals killed by plastics each year
  • 100 years for plastic to degrade in the environment
  • 90% of bottled water found to contain plastic particles
  • 83% of tap water found to contain plastic particles
  • 50% of consumer plastics are single use
  • 10% of all human-generated waste is plastic

World Environment Day will seek to influence change in four key areas:

Reducing Single-Use Plastics

50% of the of consumer plastics are designed to be used only once, providing a momentary convenience before being discarded. Eliminating single-use plastics, both from design chains to our consumer habits is a critical first step to beat plastic pollution. 

Improving Waste Management

Nearly one third of the plastics we use escape our collection systems. Once in the environment, plastics don’t go away, they simply get smaller and smaller, last a century or more and increasingly find their way into our food chain. Waste management and recycling schemes are essential to a new plastics economy.

Phasing Out Microplastics

Recent studies show that over 90% of bottled water and even 83% of tap water contain microplastic particles. No one is sure what that means for human health, but trace amounts are turning up in our blood, stomachs, and lungs with increasing regularity. Humans add to the problem with micro-beads from beauty products and other non-recoverable materials.

Promoting Research into Alternatives

Alternative solutions to oil-based plastics are limited and difficult to scale. This doesn’t need to be the case. Further research is needed to make sustainable plastic alternatives both economically viable and widely available.

Diamond weave throws

Qwerk Emporium will be following the events in India closely as plastic pollution is one of our main concerns and one of the reasons we started our business. Of additional interest to us is the fact that many of our products are sourced from India. When we first discovered these wonderful diamond, weave throws we could not believe they had been made from recycled plastic bottles! They feel so soft and warm.

It is not only what can be made from recycled plastic that amazes us, but the range of materials and the skill and imagination that goes into producing some wonderful gifts and household and garden items. Who would have thought old bicycle chains could be turned into tea light holders, bottle openers, clocks, bookends and coasters.  But more on that another day!

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