Face masks everywhere!
Every jacket, coat, pair of trousers and nightgown in our household has at least one face mask in a pocket. Face masks are now as standard a household item as toilet paper.
The facemark epidemic has officially started! In a recent survey, 1 in 20 people in London have said they will no longer wear face masks now that they are no longer compulsory.
The other day I opened my sock drawer and found a surgical face mask staring back at me. There were also about 5 single socks in there which is possibly more upsetting.
During every dog walk I come across at least 5 discarded face masks left on the side of the road. Soon they will be clogging up our water ways, polluting our oceans and generally choking our ecosystems.
The irony is painful; We are slowly suffocating our planet with discarded face masks...
I read somewhere that at the peak of the global pandemic we were using 129 billion face masks and 68 billion plastic gloves. These discarded masks and gloves release harmful chemicals into the environment and with the sheer numbers, this builds up to a very real threat to flora and fauna the world over.
A worldwide upcycling solution needs to be developed to avoid a wide scale environmental disaster.
A very good article written on the impact of micro-plastics pollution as a result of the increase in discarded face masks due to the global pandemic was published by Kajanan Selvaranjan et al earlier this year.
As the impact of climate change is hotting up again, quite literally, with the insurmountable heat waves and wild fires happening around the world this summer, this new threat to our natural world needs to be addressed quickly.