Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 20 August 2014

Packaging is the big issue not plastic bags

It amazes me to see the furore about plastic carrier-bags. Our supermarkets have aisle after aisle of produce wrapped in heavy plastic containers, yet we choose to take issue with the flimsiest and least important item in the stores: plastic carrier-bags.

When I was growing up, milk bottles and soft-drink bottles were returned, sterilised and re-used.

Similarly, many products were put into cardboard boxes, or brown paper bags, which were either re-usable or bio-degradable.

We think we have invented recycling, but, in fact, we are falling behind practices of 50 years ago.

How long will we allow society to waste millions of pounds on oil to produce mountains of hard plastic, which we accept from the supermarkets and then pay through the nose in rates and personal efforts to recycle?

We need to put pressure on Government and the supermarkets to stop producing a mountain of waste in the first place.

Plastic carrier-bags as a focus are a rather meaningless diversion from the main problem.

JOHN WILSON

Belfast

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