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Why Morocco Should Ban Plastic Bags

By Rania Tazi

Rabat – Some Moroccans have expressed their disapproval regarding the upcoming ban on plastic bags in Morocco, fearing a negative impact on the economy.

Regardless of its effect on the economy, the ban will undoubtedly help reverse the environmental costs that the use of plastic bags has incurred on the country.

Here are 6 reasons as to why plastic bags should be banned:

They harm animals

Plastic bags are light and therefore prone to flying away and landing in the sea, lakes, or rivers. Marine animals may then mistake them for jellyfish and ingest them, which obstructs their digestive system and leads to asphyxiation. Animals, such as birds, are also victims to becoming entangled in plastic.

They pollute the environment

Plastic bags are easily blown away by the wind and often land in oceans, forests, fences and other locations.  Animals therefore often find they are becoming the victims of our carelessness. By ingesting, becoming entangled in, or having their habitat disrupted by plastic bags, animals are being harmed. The environment pays the price as well, since chemicals are released into the air and absorbed by the land.

They are not recycled 

Recycling has not yet been implemented in Morocco, and to do so would be extremely expensive. According to the American organization Clean Air Council. A ton of plastic bags costs $4,000 to recycle, but only costs $32 to purchase. Since they are not recycled in Morocco and are not biodegradable, plastic bags pile up in landfills and pollute the environment.

They harm humans

Plastic particles absorb pollutants, which are then ingested by marine animals. Humans who eat fish are then prone to the absorption of the toxic chemicals. These chemicals may disrupt the proper functioning of hormones.

They do not break down easily

Plastic is not degradable and takes hundreds of years to be broken down into small particles by light. After a long period of disintegration, the toxic particles are then absorbed in land or spread to oceans, becoming a hazard to animals and humans.

They contribute to climate change 

Because they use non-renewable resources such as natural gas and byproducts of petroleum such as polypropylene, plastic bags contribute to climate change. When these non-renewable resources are used to create these bags, certain greenhouse gases are released into the air and contribute to climate change.

Edited by Bryn Miller

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