GARBAGE, especially plastic discards, dumped into drains or by the roadsides, accidentally or otherwise, will eventually find their way into the sea.

This, in turn, will wreak havoc on marine life that mistake such dangerous non-biodegradables for food, and eating them can cause the denizens of the briny deep health complications or worse, death.

Garbage that ends up in the seas and oceans gets eaten by fish. Fishermen catch the fish and sell them to consumers who then eat the fish — toxins and all. The vicious cycle of garbage is, thus, complete.

Aside from affecting the seafood we eat, discarded plastic materials, bags in particular, also endanger marine wildlife like sea turtles and whales which eat them by mistake and die of starvation due to defective ingestion.

This could affect the food chain in open waters where plastic waste abounds through indiscriminate disposal.

Future generations will be the poorer if marine life, as we know it, becomes extinct one day from plastic poisoning.

The saving grace is awareness raised by conservation-conscious groups on the importance of environmental cleanliness on land and sea, and in Kuching, there are three such groups — the Kuching Beach Cleaners, the Sarawak Eco-Warriors and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) — which regularly hold voluntary beach-cleaning campaigns to ensure less waste ends up in the sea.

But given the mountains of garbage collected and disposed of everyday, the inevitable question is how to prevent plastic waste, found among the garbage, from reaching the seas and oceans?

The obvious answer is to not throw them away but find some useful purposes for them.

Read more at The Borneo Post