MEP Roberta Metsola called on the public to do their bit and show consideration for the environment and future generations by joining “the war on plastic.”
Speaking at a discussion on banning the use of single-use plastics hosted by the European Parliament in Malta, MEP Metsola emphasised that “single-use plastics are clogging our seas, killing our marine life and causing irreparable damage to Malta and Gozo’s natural environment.”
“Worrying statistics show us that close to 75% of the marine litter in the world’s oceans is plastic. Malta and Gozo are no different. It simply cannot continue at the current rate. It is time for change”
And it’s not only plastics, it’s our entire waste management system that needs updating and enforcing according to Metsola.
The Maltese MEP said that by using non-biodegradable plastic material, we are adding to the heaps of harmful, instantly-throw away goods that are constantly being wasted. These eventually end up in the sea which are constantly broken down into small nodules that are eventually consumed by fish and turtles, who are harmed and even killed by them.
“Single-use plastics are clogging our seas ????, killing our marine life ???? and causing irreparable damage to ???????? Malta and Gozo’s natural environment ????.”
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— EPP_MT ???????? (@EPP_MT) February 8, 2019
So, she came up with a number of things we can do to aim for zero-waste and non-use of single plastics.
1. Ditch plastic bags
“If instead of the usual plastic bags we still see everywhere, we use boxes or cloth; or if we stopped purchasing products covered in excessive, unnecessary, plastic packaging,” we’d be helping the problem.
2. Bring your own packaging
“Instead of throwing away a coffee cup every time we have a hot drink we use re-usable flasks” or “instead of the usual plastic straws we give our children paper straws or ones made out of bamboo,” she said.
3. Call for changes in our localities
Lastly, Metsola said that instead of plastic confetti during our festas we could “go back to using paper.”
“My point is that miniscule – almost unnoticeable – differences in our lifestyles could make a massive difference.” She said that we could go beyond the EU complete ban on single plastics that will come into force in 2021 and implement other additional models that work in our local context.
She said that Malta has been successful in becoming the financial services island, the online gaming island, the tourism island, the maritime law island and now the Blockchain Island. “Is it not time to become the Mediterranean’s first island free from single-use plastics?”