Ignorance of Environmental Harm Endangers Community Life

When the law of nature is altered, we are left to face the consequences of our actions. The prevalence of environmental threats is a result of our disrespect for nature. Over the years, man has remained the architect of almost all the environmental problems we have today. Sadly, most of us are ignorant of the impact of our deeds.

From poor farming techniques, annoying waste management, and carefree environmental usage, we are a constant pain to the environment, which is our host.

In April 2012, the Cameroon government issued a ban on the use of non-biodegradable plastic packaging of less than 60 microns—plastics that cannot decompose, which came into force in April 2014.

Over eight years today, these plastic bags are still used in Cameroonian markets to package household items which end up in our waterways, the streets, rivers and farmland. Who is losing? We are the same people who complain about poor farm yields, floods, and aquatic extinction.

The effects of plastic bags on our environment and our health are far more far-reaching than we can ever imagine. The government did not ban the use of non-biodegradable plastic for the fun of it, but for the wellbeing of our environment, which cannot be disconnected from our overall health.

Plastic bags pose a threat to our agricultural land and the dilapidation of the atmosphere, which in turn destroys some of the nutrients found in the soil. Since plastic waste does not decompose, it breaks into smaller pieces and spreads into the soil. The chemicals from this plastic waste sink into the soil, and it reduces the nutrients in the soil.

Plastic bags are the reason some sea animals are gradually disappearing. For example, sea turtles, tuds, and crabs, which used to be common in our backyards, are now rare species, depriving present and future generations of sight of these creatures.

Plastic bags are one of the reasons we have floods in our community. Given that these bags do not decompose, they pile up year in and year out and block waterways. The result is that water forces itself into alternative channels, thereby leading to floods that break down homes.

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