The three basic ingredients in making plastics are phthalate, bisphenol A (BPA) and sometimes also mixed polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Phthalate is the most widely used ingredient and works hard on soft plastics. The second highest is BPA as a material that makes plastic harder, durable and prevents it from fading. The third is PBDEs and this material makes waterproof plastic widely used in the production of mobile phones and electrical goods. (DailyMetro, 2018) 3
ENVIRONTMENTAL IMPACT OF THE PLASTIC USAGE The most obvious form of pollution associated with plastic packaging is wasted plastic sent to landfills. Plastics are very stable and therefore stay in the environment a long time after they are discarded, especially if they are shielded from direct sunlight by being buried in landfills. Decomposition rates are further decreased by anti-oxidants that manufacturers commonly add to enhance a container’s resistance to attack by acidic contents. Plastics also put a big chemical burden on the environment. The Oakland Recycling Association commissioned an analysis of the toxic chemical burden that relied heavily on information from EPA data, especially the Toxics Release Inventory. These data were limited because manufacturers within the “miscellaneous plastics sector” did not file reports. Nevertheless, the information available showed that most toxic releases went into the air, and the plastics industry contributed 14% of the national total. Of the top ten manufacturers ranked by total releases, seven made plastic foam products. Significant releases of toxic chemicals included trichloroethane, acetone, methylenechloride, methyl ethyl ketone, styrene, toluene, benzene and 1.1.1 trichloroethane. [ CITATION PTF \l 17417 ] PREVENTION In Malaysia, efforts to reduce plastic consumption have begun with the "Plastic Bag No Day Campaign." The state of Penang was the first state to implement the program in 2009. This was followed by Selangor and Melaka, both in 2011. Meanwhile in 2017, Pulau Pinang and Selangor began charging 20 cent for the plastic bags demanded by customers. Meanwhile, for plastic straws, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan will embark on awareness raising on plastic straw harms from 2019 while the full ban on Malaysia will begin in 2020. 4
ENFORCEMENT In 2030, the government of Malaysia has announced that it will eliminate the use of plastic. Awareness campaign targeted among the public’s plastic consumption habits will be conducted throughout the year before the ban is fully enforced on licensed trader and food operators in 2020. Once the ban is fully enforced, businesses that were caught using plastic straws will have their licenses revoked. Therefore, there shall be no excuse for business owners to claim ignorance. [ CITATION Zaf181 \l 17417 ] CONCLUSION As an initiative to support the plastic consumption reduction campaign, our team members adopt plastic recycling methods and carry their plastics when shopping to reduce plastic usage.
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- Spring '15
- plastic bag, Waste, Plastic recycling, GCED, Miri Learning Centre