It is no longer news that the world is on the brink of a climate crisis. Rising temperatures, startling climatic imbalance, melting ice caps and disappearing biological life are just some of the signs that demand we take action.
At this juncture, Climate Sustainability should be much more than a buzzword, but a charge to businesses and individuals to adopt responsible behavior that protect the environment.
While we fight collectively to reduce carbon emissions, there is a far even greater problem – the plastic problem.
The Plastic Problem
Plastics – They come in different shapes and sizes, and can be some of the most colorful pieces of art you can find, but again, according to a 2018 environmental study, plastics represents one of the biggest threats to the world’s ecosystem and marine life.
Because most are non-degradable, they continue to pollute the environment for many years. The stats show that:
- Nearly all of the plastic that has ever been made still exists today as it stays in the environment for up to 1,000 years
- We produce around 335 million tons of plastic each year – roughly the same weight as all of humanity combined
- An estimated 79% of plastics made each year are not recycled, with 6.3 billion metric tons ending up in landfills.
- A massive 50% of the plastic we use is single use
- 13 million tons of plastic enter the oceans each year meaning that there will be more plastic than fish by 2050
The Plastic Problem in the Cannabis Industry
The cannabis industry is not left out in the fight against climate change. In fact, the industry is faced with its unique challenges with regards to maintaining a “plastics-negative” footprint.
Because several legal policies demand that certain standards be met, there is an almost inevitable need to use plastics. For instance, the majority of legal marketplaces require extra packaging in order to meet child-proof standards. There is also the issue of compliance in regards to how each package should be presented. Because each individual package is often required to be “sealed” at the time of purchase, reusable jars are out of the question.
So, how can cannabis companies help the environment?
For starters, there is a need for a change in attitude towards the environment as a matter of policy. Cannabis companies can move to adopt the following measures in its quest to support the environment in the fight against climate change;
- Reduce the use of single-use plastics
- Encourage less printing, and printing double sided with multiple pages per sheet when necessary
- Change to renewable energy sources
- Reuse where possible
- Replace plastic with better sustainable materials where possible
In other ways, cannabis companies can commit to the Repurpose Global “One for One Impact Guarantee Program,” which encourages companies to remove more plastic from the Earth than they are contributing to it.
The fight against climate change is a fight for the earth’s survival and as such is everyone’s fight. As businesses, adopting environment-positive policies in even the littlest of things would make some impact towards achieving a sustainable environment.
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