Posted 14th Jun 2018 by Peter Byrne
The Marine Conservation Society is urging people to go through July plastic free
It has been predicted that by 2050, there could actually be more plastic in our seas than there is fish (by weight), which apart from being a horrifying stat, highlights our reliance on the substance.
Now, the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is encouraging the public to take on its Plastic Challenge.
To participate, all you need to do is give up single-use plastics during July.
Simon Reeve, TV presenter and MCS Ocean Ambassador, said: "Our planet is becoming poisoned by plastic. The vast amount in our oceans has become an environmental emergency as a direct result of our throwaway society. That’s why I’m supporting thousands of people living without single use plastic this July as part of the Marine Conservation Society’s Plastic Challenge. Don’t just get depressed about plastic - stop using it!"
The Plastic Challenge has run for the last four years and has been supported by BRITA UK since 2016. Over 1,000 people took part in 2016, and last year, more than 5,035 people registered to go without single use plastic, which includes food packaged in plastic, plastic water and milk bottles, shower gels and toothpaste, to name just a few.
The things that proved the hardest to go without in previous years were milk containers, dried goods packaged in single use plastic like pasta, rice and pulses, along with loo paper and toothpaste.
The charity is hoping more people will try the challenge this year. The issue was emphasised by the BBC's Blue Planet II, and this year, there will be more advice to help people participating.
The book talks you through an average day, including tips and advice on removing unnecessary plastic at every opportunity. This ranges from getting up to go to bed, finding out about plastic-free cosmetics, mealtimes, shopping, workplace, pets, sporting and special events.
Last year, the Challengers made their own bread, yogurt, cleaning and bathroom products like mouthwash and sugar scrubs so not to use plastic containers that are used once and are then thrown out.
MCS beach cleaning data revealed there has been a 180 per cent rise in plastic litter that's found on beaches in the last two decades posing a huge threat to wildlife and humans alike. Plastic bags, bottles and tiny pieces of plastic will be regularly found in the stomachs of turtles and other sea creatures, and in some cases, have eve caused their death by starvation or choking.
You can find out more about signing up to take part in the Plastic Challenge here: www.mcsuk.org/plastic-challenge