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The environment around us takes the fall for the plastic pollution. The animals suffocate and die from choking on the plastic waste thrown into the oceans and on land, because even the production of plastic has destroyed some food sources for them or they are simply confused to mistake plastic for food. This is what a young Swedish man thought while entering in the James Dyson awards. The James Dyson Award is an international contest that encourages and inspires the next generation of designers to invent ideas to solve any world problems. Pontus Törnqvist was twenty-four years old when he won a James Dyson award for Sweden, it was Sweden’s first win ever for this award. He was going to move on to the final runner-ups for a chance to win a lot of cash.

He simply made the plastic out of potato starch and water, then heated it up, like a thermoplastic. He explained to the James Dyson awards that, “A large part of the plastic that comes into the environment comes from fast food industry. We need better options! Potato plastic comes from the ground and can be composed without harm to nature. The idea can also be adapted to other countries and to what crops they grow there.” But what makes the plastic we usually see, so bad? First off, plastic only gets degraded to smaller pieces and does not go away. Plastic is effecting human and wildlife health. There has been at least one story of how the animals have died from suffocation from plastic but it hurts humans too. It is said that plastics can cause cancer, birth defects, endocrine disruption, and etc. Plastic also effects water because the landfills of collected waste gives off a toxic chemical that effects all water types. Believe it or not, plastic effects tourism as well and it has taken a great toll on countries.

There are other alternatives being created and tested in other countries to hopefully change the world. One man from India created plastic bags out of vegetable oil derivatives and natural starch. Another group from India has also created edible cutlery, made from sorghum flour plus small quantities of rice, wheat, and water. An alternative to wrapping food up is a wax based piece of fabric and it is something you can make at home. You just need a one hundred percent cotton fabric thin like a sheet but also thick to hold together, beeswax pellets or shave some beeswax, scissors, and parchment paper.

The world everyone lives in is different from years before, as it is constantly changing and evolving. How we handle problems now will change the future generations lives or give them a problem to solve and/or add on to the solution. Changing the way we use plastic is the first step into a changed world.