You may think of wet wipes as seemingly innocent. After all, most of us use them from time to time, to exfoliate, to remove make up, to clean worktops, bathroom suites or baby’s bottoms, but the sheer quantity of wet wipes being used is damaging our planet.
What most people don’t realise is that these wet wipes contain unnecessary plastic, which makes them incredibly slow to biodegrade. Build ups of these wet wipes are blocking pipes in our sewage systems and have formed an island which is currently floating down the Thames. This mass of wet wipes has grown to the size of two tennis courts according to sonar and laser scans of the riverbed. This mass is increasing in size by the day as more and more people are flushing these wet wipes down the toilet as their means of disposal.
Labour MP Fleur Anderson said, “it’s a meter deep or more in places…[and]…it’s actually changed the course of the Thames.”
As a result the UK Parliament are considering a Bill to “prohibit the manufacture and sale of wet wipes containing plastic, and connected purposes.” And there’s a real call for beauty brands and shops to move towards a complete ban on the sale of wet wipes containing plastic.
There is an argument that it’s everyone’s responsibility to change their behaviour. It’s down to the manufacturers to stop producing these products, it’s down to the brands to stop requesting the manufacture, the shops to stop selling them and the consumer to stop buying them. A consumer boycott of these products could go a really long way. And with attitudes slowly moving towards a more sustainable buying culture this doesn’t seem like a million miles away.
Currently the UK use and flush 11 billion wet wipes every single year. This of course has a knock on effect not only to our sewage and plumbing systems but to our marine life.
What we need are sustainable alternatives. We want less single use plastic and absolutely no unnecessary plastic use. That’s why the Ginny Faye ethos is recycled, sustainable and vegan. We care for the planet, as you will see from the items we stock.
◈ Recycled ◈ Sustainable ◈ Vegan ◈