Today humanity is engaged in a mad race for survival on the planet – changing over to conscious consumption, interchanging gasoline engines with electric ones, cruising on sailing yachts with solar panels.
The most obvious and simple step on the way to a “green” bright future that everyone can do is to completely refuse the use of plastic bags. But is it worthwhile to do it?
Today, paper bags are considered an alternative to the usual plastic bags. In the 1960s, the situation was reversed – plastic replaced pulp from the market. Why? Because it was more durable.
“Reliability”, “reuse”, and “reprocessing” are the main three “Rs” that define conscious consumption today.
This can be also applied to plastic bags with minor adjustments.
1. They’re really durable. Evidently more durable than paper. They can withstand more weight, have more modifications and, consequently, more applications.
2. You can use them several times. To open that package and go shopping with it. So the old containers will be used, and new ones will not appear.
3. Plastic is recycled. But not all of it – only about 20%. And in the process of processing and producing new products, the environment is again damaged. The other 80% pollute the world around us.
Paper bags also partially meet the requirements. Although they aren’t so durable, they can be easily reused or recycled.
BUT: paper packaging requires about 14 billion trees to be hewn every year. And plastic bags are a byproduct of oil refining.
Producing a single paper bag requires four times more electricity than for a plastic bag. Paper production releases 70% more pollutants into the air and 50% more into the water than its plastic analogue.
Either of the two options has its benefits and implications. And everyone should decide themselves what they will go shopping with.
ORIENT chooses the third way – fabric shopping bags. This is an eco-friendly alternative to plastic and paper bags, corresponding to the three “R” rule. You can sew it yourself or buy factory analog with original prints. And, according to an investigation by the UK Environmental Protection Agency, use at least 330 times!