Dirty Environmentalist | The Jackal

22 Oct 2011

Dirty Environmentalist

There seems to be a disposition of late for some commentators to use “environmentalist” like it’s a dirty word. Some even go as far as to label all environmentalists as dirty hippies. This type of fundamentally defunct thought process is obviously wrong!

People who can define themselves as environmentalists come from all walks of life, including scientists, politicians and clean cut business people who see the benefit in protecting the environment for future generations. In fact children are often the most ardent environmentalists around, mainly because they don’t associate any financial benefit to ruining the environment.

The terrible truth of the matter is that mankind is destroying the delicate environment that we rely on to survive. Some of this destruction is caused through a lack of oversight and cost cutting measures to maximise profits. However some environmental pollution is far harder to see or mitigate against.

The School of Biology & Environmental Sciences in Dublin, has found that small fragments of plastics like acrylic, polyethylene, polypropylene, polyamide and polyester is accumulating in marine habitats and that ingestion of these micro-plastic provides a potential pathway for the transfer of pollutants, monomers, and plastic-additives to organisms with uncertain consequences for their health.

The study also found that the main source of micro-plastic appears to be through sewage contaminated by fibres from washing clothes.

The micro-plastics contain harmful and often carcinogenic ingredients which go into the bodies of animals and could be transferred to people who consume seafood. The study advocates that clothing and washing machine manufacturers need to be aware of the problem and to seek ways to reduce the release of micro-plastic into waste-water.

This is yet another good reason to wear natural fibres like hemp.