NAIROBI PARK DIARY

Death by plastic

Single-use plastic bags have been banned in Kenya. However, it appears there are still a number of plastic bags in circulation

In Summary

• Apart for looking ugly as litter, plastic also kills animals and children, too

Plastic in the carcass of an animal
Plastic in the carcass of an animal
Image: GARETH JONES

Konga followed his mother obediently wherever they went. Being a baby Kongoni (coke’s hartebeest), he needed her milk to keep him growing strong.

One day, the herd wandered towards a different area. Mother saw a strange-looking object and swallowed it whole, then she fell down making a gasping noise. Konga bleeted frantically for help, but no help came. His mother gasped her last breath and lay still. Konga stood bleeting desperately, but she lay frozen in death, choked by a plastic bag.

When driving through the city, there are various places where the pollution levels are extreme, like the Industrial Area on Enterprise Road, where residents of a large slum dump their waste next to the road. Huge piles of rubbish accumulate over a short period of time.

 

It is clear to me that much work is required by the Nairobi City Council to have an effective waste management system where end-users are compliant to the environmental regulations. The city cannot wait for 2030 for such order to be achieved; the time to act is now!

Each day becomes a new challenge for the animals and plants that try to live beside the growing city. This is a time like no other in which all citizens need to play a responsible role in controlling the pollutants that stem from our human lifestyles. One such pollutant is PLASTIC bags. Apart for looking ugly as litter, plastic also kills animals and children, too.

Thankfully, single-use plastic bags have been banned in Kenya. However, it appears there are still a number of plastic bags in circulation. Help stop litter pollution today for a better tomorrow! Be proud of a clean, green Nairobi!