World Environment Day | "Solutions to plastic pollution"

World Environment Day | "Solutions to plastic pollution"

Mme Dalila Hichri

Mrs Dalila Hichri
Environmentalist Expert
Sahara and Sahel Observatory

Close your eyes, here you are face-to-face with nature. 
A vast green landscape stretching as far as the eye can see in front of you 
Streams, glistening in the sunlight, meander gracefully through the valley. A sea adorned with crystalline waves and filled with sparkling marine life. Majestic trees standing proud, offering their benevolent shade, their leaves dancing to the rhythm of a gentle breeze. Birds filling the air with their melodious songs, adding a living symphony to this visual symphony. Wind carrying the thrilling scents of flowers floating in the air. Mountains looming in the background, accentuating the peaceful beauty of the place. Inhabitants living in harmony with nature. 
This enchanting landscape calls for contemplation and a deep connection with nature. It's a true haven of peace, where natural beauty awakens the senses and soothes the soul. 

Open your eyes now (time to stop dreaming!). 
You'll marvel at the sight of a landscape where plastic reigns supreme, and where bright green fields are covered with a shimmering carpet of plastic bags, bottles and colorful garbage that stretches as far as the eye can see, lending the scene an unreal beauty.  

Streams everywhere are adorned with cheerful multicolored plugs, absorbing the residues of industrial civilization. The sea, bearing mountains of garbage, abandoned nets and fragments of all kinds, offers a striking vision of our impact on the marine ecosystem. Fish move around the packaging, mistaking these objects for new forms of artificial habitat, and feeding down to their innards on micro-plastic. Sea turtles delight in plastic bags, mistaking them for delicious jellyfish. Trees bear delicate garlands formed by tangled bags, a sign of the close union between nature and the plastic industry. Birds fly side by side with plastic bags, sometimes racing them, and weave their nests with plastic debris, evoking their love for this modern material. The wind carries particles, creating a genuine aerial ballet. The mountains are adorned with layers of plastic waste, offering a new artistic perspective on geology. Inhabitants, proudly strutting among the plastic waste, proudly stroll through this modern canvas, sporting protective masks adorned with artistic motifs, testifying to their intimate relationship with the chimerical atmosphere. Their homes, designed with recycled materials, reflect their commitment to environmental protection. 

This landscape, "wonderfully" polluted by plastic, is a recall of our responsibility in creating this unique ecosystem, overwhelmed by our unconditional love for this synthetic material. No landscape in the world escapes the debris and fragments of plastic that can be found as far away as Antarctica. In addition to drifting cans and bottles, the water is teeming with tiny particles, often invisible to the naked eye.
Indeed, plastic has become an ever-present element of modern society. Plastic discoveries continued to emerge over the years and its production and use have increased like never before. Unfortunately, we have become addicted to the packaging, single-use products and conveniences that facilitate our modern lives. 

Flooded with plastic, nature suffocates! 
The ongoing catastrophe: mountains, rivers, seas and fields full of garbage and clogged with plastic waste that is very difficult to degrade, a sky choked with toxic emissions from the production and transformation of plastics, and pollution that reaches the geology by entering into the composition of rocks, or plastiglomerates.

Today, plastic is one of the most serious threats to our planet 
To mark World Environment Day on June 5, 2023, which focuses on solutions to plastic pollution, the Sahara and Sahel Observatory is sharply standing against plastic pollution and highlighting its impact on our planet. It urges us to intensify and take immediate measures to tackle this crisis, mobilize transformative action, reduce plastic consumption and production, and adopt simple and easy gestures to limit its use.