Plastics Harming the Environment? We try to find out

These days plastics have been used for various items such as bottles, bags etc. But what most of the people don’t know is that what are the harmful chemicals present in it. Most of the people who buy water bottles happen to dispose them instead of reusing them. As calculations taken from a report around 40 million plastic water bottle are dumped almost every day. In order to reduce the carbon footprints, it is better to reuse them or stop using them as they will also save the money.

The marketers will smartly promote the people to buy water bottles by saying that water bottles are healthier and more pure than tap water. But the fact is that tap water is healthier than the bottled water. This is proven by the NRDC (Natural Resource Defense Council) after a completion of 4 years of study. It is proven by them that in the water bottle there are many bacteria as well as harmful chemicals present.

An interesting fact about water bottles while marketing is that the number of bottles which are packaged are mainly taken from tap water itself. After taking the tap water, it will go for filtration and purification. Later it will get packaged and given a brand name like for example “kingfisher”, “Kinley”, etc. and kept for selling. So in comparison with the normal tap water, we need to pay the price of 240 or more.


In order to reduce the carbon foot prints as well as have good health, it is better to go with stainless steel bottle. These stainless steel bottles won’t have any chemical leaked. In spite of all this awareness, if people still would like to or prefer water bottles then check the quality of the plastic. In order to check the quality of the plastic as well as if it is safe, we will use the handy chart. The handy chart will help us choose the healthiest plastic by allotting some numbers for quick reference such as 2, 4 and 5 are safe and the remaining numbers are considered to be unsafe.


Suppose the reference number is #2, then it is noted as high- density polyethylene. This type of plastic is mainly used in milk jugs, detergents and shampoo bottles. This plastics is structured with high density. Also the resistant is very high. If the reference number is #4, then it is noted as low density polyethylene. This type of low density plastic is never used in water bottles but will be used in grocery bags and sandwich bags also known as Ziploc bags.

If the reference number is #5, then it is noted as polypropylene. This is used for syrup bottles and yogurt containers. Even if you find it difficult and still some people prefer to even avoid this, then a solution to this is to turn away from plastics.

The most harmful plastics are PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) which is numbered as #3, polystyrene which is numbered as #6. These are harmful to the environment as well as to human health as it can cause headaches, dizziness, they can harm the endocrine and etc. It is better to avoid such plastics.

For the people who want to choose water bottles in emergency case, here are some tips which can be used. Tip 1 is once you open the water bottle, smell the bottle. If it smells like plastic, then pour all the water out of the bottle or if you are still at the shop from where you have bought it then return it back. Tip 2, prefer buying water bottles in bulk instead of individual pack. Tip 3, in order to avoid plastic, try to use glass or stainless steel for drinking water. Tip 4, it is always better to keep your water bottle if it is plastic from sunlight as it can create more leaches easily. Tip 5, if there is dust on the water bottle, choose another bottle. Before purchasing the bottle check the manufacturing date. If the manufacturing date is more than six months, don’t buy that particular bottle. Tip 6, best option is to drink tap water or if you feel that tap water is not safe for you and your health, buy a home filter such as aqua guard, zero b, etc. This way you can save the environment as well as save the money which will be wasted when you buy the water bottles.

Another way to avoid plastics is to prefer bio plastics. It is one of the best options because it can help in collecting kitchen compost and yard trimming. This can also be used in bags.


One more good news which can be added to this topic of plastics is that the government has asked all the store to start charging for plastic bags whenever the customers ask. Generally, the rates of the plastic bags vary depending on the size. If the customer asks for a small bag then it will charge rupees 2 per bag used. If the customer asks for a big bag then it will charge rupees 4 per bag. Instead of wasting money of buying a plastic bag, I would suggest all customers to start carrying their own bags or carry bags which are made of cloth. The advantage of this would be that at least using the cloth there are more chances to hold more items in comparison with plastic bags. In conclusion, some plastics are harmful and some are not. So I would personally suggest that we avoid plastic as much as possible and start saving the environment.



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