Saturday, December 24, 2011
A "conveniently plastic" culture
It bugs the hell out of me.
For overseas friends and others who don't know what's it for - Whenever it rains, the stand magically appears. It's for shoppers entering the mall, to bag their wet umbrellas so as to prevent, I presume, either the floors of the mall getting dirty or the possibility of shoppers slipping and falling. It can be seen at various malls across Singapore.
This stand appears outside Hougang Mall whenever it rains - even a drizzle. Then you know what happens? The bin outside the mall gets stuffed full of these plastic bags.
It doesn't matter whether shoppers are holding a huge, long umbrella or a small, foldable one, I see both groups grab these plastics off the stand anyway. I will not comment on those whose umbrellas are huge, long ones though it's something to be improved on, but is it really so difficult to keep a small, used plastic bag inside our bags for our smaller sized wet umbrellas? The same plastic bag which can be aired at home and then used again? How about a re-usable ziplock bag?
In the mall, there are shops which give out reusable shopping bags, all the name of being environmentally-friendly. NTUC gives 10cents off if you purchase more than $10 worth of goods and do not need a plastic bag. The Body Shop just there in the background of the photo boasts of being environmentally-friendly. Out here, the mall's management puts out a stand with free plastic bags, which Singaporeans with our kiasu attitudes, takes and uses like nobody's business, then throws it away some 30 minutes later when they leave the mall.
Which is more telling of our attitudes towards being environmentally friendly? Those reusable shopping bags from shops (which we barely use, by the way), or the simple act of placing a stand of plastic bags outside the mall?
So disappointed and angry.
We truly have a "conveniently plastic" culture.