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Can Bamboo Help our Plastic Crisis?

Updated: Jul 2, 2023

Marine plastic debris is predicted to reach 250 million tonnes by 2025.


“Single use plastics that take 5 seconds to produce, are used for 5 minutes, then take 500 years to break down again,” Frans Timmermans, European Commission VP.

As we all know by now, plastic is causing a worldwide dilemma. It’s devastating marine environments and wildlife, as well as building up tonnes of landfill at an alarming rate.


So, what can we do to minimise and help solve this global issue?

1

Aside from taking these individual steps to help solve the issues with plastic, we need to continue using alternatives on a larger scale. We’ve heard about bamboo toothbrushes and bamboo reusable coffee cups, but there are many other wonders of bamboo.

Why bamboo is awesome:

1. Bamboo is 100% biodegradable, which makes it already 100% better than plastic


2. No irrigation, pesticides or chemical fertilisers are required to harvest bamboo


3. It’s multi-purpose and can be made into a variety of products e.g. clothing, furniture, infrastructure, utensils and much more


4. Bamboo has an incredibly fast growth rate (up to 24 inches a day) meaning they can be harvested quickly, making them a great renewable


5. It’s ideal for packaging due to its durable, strong and flexible qualities


6. Bamboo absorbs carbon dioxide and releases 35% more oxygen than comparable hardwood trees


7. After harvesting, bamboo roots remain in place, preventing erosion and nutrient loss unlike hardwoods (minimising the risk of deforestation and desertification)

And these are just a few of the reasons why bamboo is a great alternative to plastic. What we need to do now is use our purchasing power, campaign influencing and trending interests to increase the popularity and demand for bamboo over plastic. The more public support and interest backing the issue of plastic waste, the more governmental and corporate action there will be.


What action will you take to influence positive change for a more sustainable future?

About the Author: Angie is a full-time sustainability advocate, who enjoys getting involved in fun and creative projects to influence positive change. After studying BSc Geography at Swansea University she is now attempting adulthood, with an ongoing commitment to eco-friendly and humanitarian initiatives.

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