Amazon makes pledge to reduce single-use plastic waste
Last month, the billionaire behemoth corporation Amazon came under heavy criticism after unveiling new packaging that is not able to be recycled. Three items used for mail purchases are all deemed as single-use only, which means that they cannot be refashioned for any other purpose.
These items are all used for Amazon’s Prime service, and include an air pillow, bubble-lined plastic bag, and a standard plastic bag – which would all be left to never degrade naturally after their one-time use.
Luckily, Amazon’s Indian arm has now announced plans to replace all single-use plastic in its packaging by June 2020, using paper cushions in place of plastic packaging. This move comes ahead of Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s impending ban on plastic bags, cups, and straws.
It also follows an announcement by rival Flipkart, which said it has cut down on single-use plastic by 25% and plans to move entirely to recycled plastic consumption in its own supply chain by March 2021.
Amazon has often been criticized for using too much plastic and thermocol to wrap the billions of packages the company ships every year. A petition on Change.org for Amazon to curb its plastic use recently gained 4,000 signatures.
In an effort to be more environmentally friendly (and maybe appease some perturbed customers) this new paper material is said to be entirely recyclable.
While efforts such as banning straws and plastic bags in many major cities across the world are a move in a positive direction, it’s not the general public that contributes the most to overall pollution. Substantial efforts to protect our environment will only come at the expense of gigantic corporations such as Amazon making significant changes to their operating procedures and non-recyclable waste.
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