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the process of plastic production poses a threat to the environment
Aivee Akther Environment Pollution

The process of plastic production poses a threat to the environment

The process of plastic production poses a threat to the environment


Plastic pellets are tiny, disc-shaped granules. They usually measure about a few millimeters in diameter. Most of the consumer products made out of plastic are plastic pellets that are melted down, molded, and then remolded into shape as required.

However, plastic pellets contain toxic chemicals and pollutants that pose a threat to humans and the environment.

These chemicals remain in the environment for a long period and have serious effects on human health — such as cancer or hormonal problems, reproductive problems, and cerebral palsy.

There are also health risks in the whole process of plastic production. Environmental groups and experts have called for a global solution to the problem of chemical secretion from plastic products at a press conference titled ‘Plastic Toxic Chemical Problem Growing Public Health Crisis’ at the head office of the Environment and Social Development Organization (ASDO) in collaboration with the International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN).

IPEN and International Pellet Watch (IPW) have conducted a joint study with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in 35 countries, including Bangladesh, to find hazardous chemicals and pollutants found on the beach or lost during production and purchased recycled plastic pallets. This study was conducted from 2019 to 2020.

As part of this study, ESDO from Bangladesh conducted pellet sampling from Cox’s Bazar beach area and recycled plastics in the market.

The study was performed on a total of 18 compounds, including 11 brominated flame retardants, 6 UV-stabilizers, and bisphenol-A. Endocrine disruption chemicals were found in 12 of the 18 substances.

According to ESDO research findings, three tested chemicals were found in the palettes. They contained four compounds — a flame retardant, UV stabilizers, and bisphenol-A.

It found these samples to contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals. These palettes are unsuitable for use in new products due to chemical contamination.

Dr. Shahriar Hossain, Secretary General of ESDO, said, “The results of this study show that it is important to take international action by emphasizing the use of plastics and the harmful aspects of plastics in waste management.”

He also mentioned the effects of various chemicals and said that brominated flame retardants had attracted the most attention in recent times, which accumulate in tissues, cause cancer, trigger hormonal changes, weaken the reproductive system, and cause mental disorders in animals and humans.

He also emphasizes the endocrine-disrupting chemicals present in children’s toys, the problems they cause, and how they cause children’s neurobehavioral problems.

It made several demands during the press conference. These include the need to ban the use of toxic chemicals in plastic production, identify the necessary services for plastics, and reduce the production of unnecessary products.

To end the circular cycle of plastic production, plastic manufacturers must take responsibility for the plastic waste produced. It must ensure the end-stage consequences of using plastic waste to prevent the release of toxic chemicals, waste or contribute to climate change.

The export and incineration of waste must get a ban—lastly, allocation of enough funding for implementing and monitoring the production and uses of plastic.

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