The Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce said they applaud Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban’s statement regarding the elimination of single-use plastics in Bermuda.

A spokesperson said, “Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce [BEST] applauds the Minister of Home Affairs, The Hon. Walter Roban’s statement in the House on 5 March, 2021 regarding the elimination of single-use plastics in Bermuda. We also support the timeline proposed and the recognition of the need for further public consultation.

“The Minister listed three areas impacted by plastics in his statement: climate change, ocean pollution and human health. We should be aware that these areas are all linked. While most of us now recognize the dangers of climate change, the long timeline makes it difficult for people to understand the need to make urgent changes to mitigate the threat.

“However, the timeline for the health impacts of the plastic chemicals, that we unknowingly consume on a daily basis, is much faster than we will experience from climate change. The most widely used single-use plastics in Bermuda are plastic shopping bags, drink bottles, takeout food containers, cups, straws, stirrers, cutlery and, plates.

“The time for action is now. In the past few years, researchers have linked one chemical class associated with plastics called phthalates to asthma, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, breast cancer, obesity and type II diabetes, low IQ, neurodevelopmental issues, behavioral issues, autism spectrum disorders, altered reproductive development and male fertility issues. Other chemicals found in plastics are also implicated in health effects.

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