Meet VOTES Catappa, a changemaking green action by VOTES Indonesia. Here at Catappa, we believe even the smallest actions can contribute for a better change to our environment. For our lands, air, and water, they belong to us—the people. Be nature caretaker with VOTES Catappa.

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why do we manage plastic waste ?

Plastic waste, or plastic pollution, is ‘the accumulation of plastic objects (e.g., plastic bottles, food containers, and much more) in the Earth’s environment that adversely affects wildlife, wildlife habitat, and humans. Plastics have only been widely developed and used since the 20th century. However, its use has grown tremendously from only a few hundred tons in the 1930s to 150 million tons/year in the 1990s and 220 million tons/year in 2005. 

Since the late 20th century, we have depended on plastic. So much of what we consume is made of plastic because it’s inexpensive yet durable and versatile. However, plastic is slow to degrade (taking over 400 years or more) due to its chemical structure, which presents a considerable challenge. 

Used plastic has to go somewhere, and it’s frequently either dumped carelessly on land or in rivers in developing countries before ending up in the ocean, threatening marine life. Did you know? Each year, approximately eight million tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans. Some researchers predict that this figure could double by 2025, while others suggest there could be more plastic than fish in our oceans by 2050. 

According to the United Nations, at least 800 species worldwide are affected by marine debris, and as much as 80 percent of that litter is plastic. Marine animals can either get caught in plastic objects (such as the plastic rings that hold drinks cans together), ingest the plastic, or be exposed to plastic chemicals, which can alter their physiology over time. In addition, plastic waste also destroys mangrove systems that are important to humans and are habitats for thousands of species. 

Not only affects marine life, but plastic waste also has a tremendous impact on many other things, such as

– breaking the food chain,
– polluting soil and groundwater,
– causing air pollution,
– causing health problems for humans, and
– draining costs for tackling the impact of plastic waste

We can’t cope with the amount of plastic on our planet — nor the amount that continues to be produced. For this reason, our attitudes and behaviors towards plastic must change to ensure a safe and healthy future for our planet.