Plastics are good. Yes, but not the kind we have become used to seeing everyday. Very high quality molded plastics have a very good build quality and they last really long, whatever you do.
But today’s plastic objects are designed with too much confidence on the strength of plastic. They think that bad design will be overcome by its sterngth. Its like you started selling parts made of steel that had certain weak spots so that even if the steel never caught rust, the product would soon break and end up in a landfill.
My worry is that even paper is equally bad as plastic. Paper is so heavily treated with chemicals to make it last long that it lasts really long in a landfill. Even it causes lots of damage.
On the other hand, bio-degradable carry bags are weak and not a good alternative. They don’t last very well. The recent government initiative to make plastic bags thicker, doesn’t make sense to me. Doesn’t that put even more plastic in the landfill? I don’t think getting a thicker plastic bag make me want to re-use it.
We need containers — plastic or paper — that simply degrade within 2–3 years. Not too long and not too short. After all that is what we want. Strictly stop using containers that do not degrade. Its silly to use something that never degrades but breaks in a few days and becomes useless.
Originally published at paramaggarwal.com.