The COVID-19 pandemic, in just a few days, reversed years of effort put into banning single-use plastics. At the beginning of this out roaring virus, it was advised by health experts to not use reusable items. This is because, using reusable items could present the dangers of contamination, thus, spreading the virus more quickly. Local governments were quick to enforce a delay or suspension on reusable bags. For environmentalists, they were back at square one, wondering how to dig themselves out of this hole.
As we further look into the science of how the COVID-19 pandemic primarily spreads, there is no evidence that it spreads through contact with surfaces. Contaminated surfaces have not invoked any cases, as per the CDC’s knowledge. It is through large respiratory droplets that happens when individuals cough, sing, talk and breathe. Over a hundred virologists, epidemiologists, and other health experts claim that reusables can be used, as long as hygiene is followed. In other words, disinfecting the surfaces, washing your hands constantly, and not touching your face, can allow the usage of reusables again.
Many would still like to believe that single-use plastics prevent further contamination. However, scientists have proven that plastic seems to retain the virus for a much longer period. After the plastic is used and is discarded into landfills, communities nearby face the effect. Due to the long-lasting contamination of the plastic, it causes an outbreak of coronavirus in neighboring communities. These communities are largely populated with people of color and those with low incomes, who have already been experiencing unfair impacts of COVID-19. Hence, the plastic hinders the impact of preventing the disease to be further spread. Reusables allows the individual to know exactly where the item has been, and give responsibility to the person for disinfecting it.
In conclusion, to prevent the disease from further wide spreading across the nation, it is beneficial to not use plastic. The impacts that plastic presents are equally as dangerous to the environment as they are threatening for more spread of the pandemic. Ideally, reusables allow the person to have more control over how the contamination is impacted, by using basic hygiene.