Environmental Health Advocates Warn Of Grave Health Consequences From Plastic Pollution

Experts have warned that the continuous pollution of the environment with plastics posed a serious health hazard.

The Environmental health advocates while noting that it has become imperative to have a paradigm shift on the use of plastics, urged the Federal and State Governments to find innovative ways of ridding the environment of plastic wastes.

The experts made the call during a clean-up exercise at the Bonny Cantonment, Victoria Island on Saturday in Lagos, PUNCH reports.

The exercise was carried out to commemorate the International Coastal Clean-up Day marked annually on every third Saturday in September.

One of the advocates, who is the Executive Director, Sustainable Research and Action for Environmental Development, a Non-Governmental Organisation, Dr. Leslie Adogame, called for the ban of single-use plastics in the country.

“The government has to take bold steps to ban single-use plastics and replace them with alternatives. We can no longer continue to die when we are alive by ingesting microplastics; corporate entities must also have a paradigm shift away from plastics.

“This is not a sustainable way; plastic is not part of our system, because it is injurious to life, health and all life chain of this world,”

the expert said.

READ ALSO: Infertility, Autism, Cancer On The Radar As New Study By Patricia Hunt Highlights The Many Health Risks Of Using Plastics

Also, the Founder, Beach Samaritans, Ms. Adesola Alamutu, urged Nigerians to be part of the solution by consciously taking a reusable bag when they go out shopping. Alamutu said:

“One of the things I believe people can do is, when they go shopping and are offered plastic bags, they should refuse.

“The more the people who refuse, the less the plastic bags being used and thrown away. Also, the government needs to do a lot of enlightenment, especially in the major languages to educate people on the need to carry their bags when going out.

“Government should also ensure people are charged for the plastic bags; that way, people may be discouraged from using it.”

Also, the Founder, Kids Beach Garden, Ms. Doyinsola Ogunye, said a lot of awareness creation should begin from homes, schools, religious institutions.

Ogunye stated further that people need to be consistent and continue to do things to protect the environment in their own little spaces for as long as possible.

“We have young children and we need to let them know that plastic wastes littered everywhere and in our waterways is not the kind of environment to grow up,”

she said.

Also speaking at the event, Secretary to the Local Government, Eti-Osa, Ikoyi, Obalende Local Community Development Area, Mr. Omotola Soares, urged people to support the government by being responsible.

SEE ALSO: Pediatricians Caution Parents About Plastics & Food Packaging | Recommend Alternatives

Soares said that the government had carried out a lot of programmes to ensure the environment was clean.

“The government cannot do it alone; we all need to work together and take responsibility of our environment because the environment defines who we are,”

he said.

In his remarks, the Director, Media and Online Visibility, Humanity Nigeria, Mr. Akinola Onanuga said the organisation would be carrying out an enlightening programme from Nov. 24 on dangers of plastics. He said:

“We are bringing up the Earth Festival to rid the environment of plastics and enlighten people that these plastics can be recycled and made into wealth instead of throwing it away and causing harm.”

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