It’s the first time the impact of plastic pollution on people – not just wildlife – has been studied. The study shows that many people in the poorest parts of the world are getting ill and dying from diseases caused by the burning of rubbish and plastic near their homes. Researchers found that between 400,000 and a million people die each year from diseases like diarrhoea, malaria and cancer caused by living near uncollected waste and plastic pollution.
That’s because when rubbish isn’t collected it builds up in rivers and causes flooding to places where people collect water, which leads to diarrhoea and other diseases. Often the only way to dispose of waste in developing countries is to burn it in the streets, resulting in fumes that are extremely damaging to health. And, in many countries this burning of rubbish is the single largest source of carbon emissions, contributing to climate change.
Amongst these products are every-day items such as clothes washing liquid, shower gel, bottled drinks and food packaging.
Article from BBC (https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/48251420)
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