Disposing of the virus

Apologies for those of you who feel like you’ve heard a lot about coronavirus and life in lockdown, but unfortunately there isn’t too much else going on.

Today, I want to look at the environmental impact of coronavirus. I’m not going to pretend I’ve conducted a comprehensive study or looked at any data on this topic to make this an informed blog post but it seems to me as if we’re creating a more disposable environment when it comes to coronavirus.

We’re being advised to wear face coverings when we are unable to keep a social distance of 2m. While some are opting for reusable masks a lot of people are choosing disposable options. But it isn’t just masks that we are using now – gloves, visors and more that are all adding up to greater waste in our lives.

It wasn’t long ago that the Government declared a war on plastic which should have potentially been a war on waste but now we’re here. In an attempt to reduce the risk of the virus’ spread, are we actually increasing the destruction of the planet?

The problem with disposable masks is the potential rate in which we could get through them. You should probably have a separate one for each journey / trip. This could see you getting through a couple of masks a day. This slowly adds up. Add to this the rise in social interactions with the opening up of parts of the economy and we’ll be using quite a lot more masks creating a growing problem.

The second question here comes with the length of time we’ll be needing this. It’s likely we’ll “be living with the virus” for a while. Chris Whitty has suggested there will be some kind of restrictions until spring next year. This is a potentially huge waste problem.

 

One thought on “Disposing of the virus

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