Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on single-use of plastics in some American Firms: Policy Insights

Authors

  • KOLEAYO OMOYAJOWO Department of Cell Biology and Genetics (Environmental Conservation Working Group), University of Lagos
  • SUNDAY AMIOLEMEN Department of Science Policy and Innovation Studies, National Centre for Technology Management
  • Benjamin MWADI MAKENGO University of Kinshasa
  • AMOS OGUNYEBI Department of Cell Biology and Genetics (Environmental Conservation Working Group), University of Lagos

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.31471/2415-3184-2021-2(24)-7-12

Keywords:

Ecological Risks, Plastic pollution, American Firms, COVID-19 Pandemic

Abstract

As COVID-19 continues to present unimaginable threats to the future of the environment, it is not
impossible to rethink that the continual existence of human race is at stake. More than 60% of toxic
wastes released to the environment are largely contributed by manufacturing and service firms. Hence, this present study examined the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on corporate waste management program among selected American firms. A total of 42 notable firms across 3 cities in the US (Detroit, Atlanta and Houston) were successfully interviewed on their choices to reduce, reuse, recycle and recover their industrial waste since the outbreak of COVID-19. More than 80% of firms studied often generate plastics as waste; out of which, all firms (100%) agreed that COVID-19 encumbered their choices to manage plastic wastes. This study reasoned that COVID-19 will undoubtedly contribute to plastic pollution and its associated ecological risk in the US if appropriate measures are not painstakingly implemented. This study therefore recommends that Government and relevant stakeholders should restructure existing waste
management policies and sensitize American firms on grave dangers of plastic pollution and other toxic
wastes in the environment. Meanwhile, this study has great implications for countries in the developing world. This is because developing countries are already mired with the challenges of managing plastic wastes in the pre- COVID-19 era and are further overwhelmed with the unprecedented plastic waste generation during COVID-19. Considering that in Africa and other developing nation, standard waste
management technologies and waste emergency policies to curb the pandemic is lacking or insufficient, and hence suggesting they may witness more serious impact of plastic pollution. Government at all tiers should not only make laudable waste management policies to curb environmental pollution, but must show sincerity of purpose and political-will to implement and enforce these polices to curtail impeding global impact of plastic pollution aggravated by COVID-19 pandemic.

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Published

2022-02-07

How to Cite

OMOYAJOWO, K., AMIOLEMEN, S. ., MWADI MAKENGO, B., & OGUNYEBI, A. (2022). Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on single-use of plastics in some American Firms: Policy Insights. Ecological Safety and Balanced Use of Resources, (2(24), 7–12. https://doi.org/10.31471/2415-3184-2021-2(24)-7-12

Issue

Section

Регіональні та глобальні екологічні проблеми