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Monday, February 18, 2013

Living in a Plastic world - an essay

Totally not Scrapbook related - however still close to my heart - the environment.  Many of you may not know what I have a college diploma in - Environmental Waste Management.  Yes, you read this correctly, and yes, I am a banker, and no, they are not really related in any way shape or form.  Yeah, that's my life and education!

Living in a Plastic World....

You have probably heard this all before, I know I certainly have "we are living in a Plastic world"  And this statement can mean a few things, for you consumers and spenders out there; it can mean the lack of carrying cash, putting it on credit or paying with your debit card.  Not to mention our new currency is made of a polymer that is intended to make our new bills last longer.

That aside I'm referring to Micro-Polymers.  I won't get into the science of it, mostly because I don't know much about it, other than these things: micro-polymers were not around in nature and they are now.  In the last 50 years they have become present in everything, they don't break down, they are toxins, and they pass from one organism to another.

I was listening to Bob McDonald on CBC's Quirks & Quarks, a fascinating man, who has the ability to engage his listeners with his straight forward, yet well planned and executed line of questioning.  His guest was talking about Micro Polymers or plastic and it's presence in our oceans (here is the link to the episode, you can down load pod casts for free - give it a listen, its quite informative Oceans Of Plastic - Quirks & Quarks - CBC Radio).  I have come to realize just how important plastic is to me. I could not survive an hour, let alone a day without it.  Don't believe me???  Here is how my realization comes to be:

As I was listening to the radio program and I was in the shower.  I kicked my kids plastic Tubby Toys out of the way, pulled on the plastic knob to get the water flowing out of my plastic rain showerhead.  I couldn't hear the radio anymore for the sound of the rushing water, so I turned it up, more volume blasting out of the plastic shower radio.  I reached for the shampoo, the same shampoo that my hairdresser has warned me NOT to use because it contains polymers (plastics) in it, which are not good for my hair, but whatever.  I dispensed this plasticized shampoo from its plastic bottle.  Grabbed the soap from it's plastic soap dish and scrubbed with the 'upcycled' plastic onion bag wrapped around my soap.  This was something my parents always used too - it acts as an exfoliator and helps the soap from slipping out of your hands. Thirdly it keeps the little slivers of soap together extending the life of your soap as you are not tossing the little bits, they reside I the onion bag and congeal themselves into the new bar of soap.  My kids will probably do the same thing when they grow up...

Anyway ... back to the shower.  I realized one of the plastic caps for the Jacuzzi  jets is loose again, and that my nylon shower curtain could use a wash.  I step out of the shower into my Crocks and flip on the plastic light switch for the exhaust fan to whirl out the humidity, its plastic blades spinning so fast you can't even see them behind the plastic guard.

Plastic... it's everywhere, unavoidable, and this was just a 5 minute shower folks!

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