Covid-19 hazardous waste and biodiversity

waste and biodiversity
"Give back the forest, take your town". Hidden in the words of the poet is how important the forest is in our life. Our green land is Bangladesh. And this green forest has survived in our biodiversity. Due to the fertile land, warm and humid climate, the biodiversity of Bangladesh is rich. Due to the corona virus, the number of people is less. Nature also seems to have regained its familiar form. On the other hand, the amount of medical waste is increasing and at the same time the health risk is increasing.

A non governmental organisation 'The Environment and Social Development Organization' (ESDO) said that between 26 March and 25April near 14,500 tonnes of health hazardous plastic waste increased: PPE, surgical masks, surgical hand gloves, polythene hand gloves, hand sanitizers. , polythene bags etc. are like a daily companion of people. After 7 March, the demand for these medical equipments is increasing day by day. Although there is a provision to disinfect medical waste through autoclave machine and burn it at high temperature, only a few number of hospitals are complying with it.

Moreover, most of the people are throwing away these masks, gloves and hand sanitizers without disinfecting them.During the monsoon season, these wastes will be mixed with rain water and will flow into the water of various canals, ditches and rivers. As a result, the water will be polluted. Again, the germs of medical wastes will mix in the air and pollute the air. The polythene that we are constantly using in tea, coffee, juice, grocery stores, including medical waste, lasts up to 50 years. As a result, the soil is getting polluted.

The three elements soil, water, air of the environment are polluting. Which is having an impact on our biodiversity, on the climate. Climate change is causing complex diseases of various animals such as respiratory problems, heart attacks, chronic bronchitis, cancer, etc. Unexpected natural disasters such as rising sea level, excess rainfall, drought, abnormal temperature etc. are increasing.These wastes that we use all the time, including medical wastes, erode the land and decreases soil fertility. If soil fertility is low, trees will not be able to grow. Habitat of thousands of species and animals centered on plants. Again, if the fertility of the land decreases, there may be food crisis in the future. Which will have an extreme impact on our economy.

Waste Dhaka
Many farmers use pesticides on their land to increase fertility or in the hope of better yields.Combining these pesticides and wastes with rainwater harms aquatic plants in the water. Many times, if the level of poison is high, the fish in the water die. Macrophytes, phytoplankton, zooplankton in fish as well as water are extremely harmful to plants. Excess contaminated water reduces oxygen levels. So aquatic animals cannot survive in this polluted water. Soil, water, air pollution is polluting the environment and in the face of extreme crisis in our biodiversity. Bangladesh is a populous country. The amount of waste generated in Bangladesh is 22.4 million tons per year or 150 kilograms per capita. It has increased during the Coronation period. If we do not manage waste properly, we will face more risks ahead.

Proper waste management is essential to protect ourselves and our biodiversity from this dangerous waste. Rich biodiversity is needed to sustain life with food, clothing, shelter and wellness. Natural balance is essential for the survival of all animals and plants, including humans. And to maintain this balance, it is vital that the right number of all animal and plant species survive.

Biodiversity must be protected in the interest of human healthy living and normal life. Biodiversity is needed for the survival of present and future generations. Therefore, biodiversity must be protected. That's why medical waste should be incinerated in hospitals in accordance with the instructions. And we ordinary people who use masks, hand gloves will burn them at a certain place at a high temperature without throwing them away. In this way we can protect ourselves and our biodiversity from hazardous wastes.

Khandaker Nayma Akter Noon
Student, Department of Archaeology
Comilla University, Bangladesh.

Other writing of this writer:
The time of lockdown can be the time of acquire skills

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