A Planet Full of Plastic
Wren & Rook
Neal Layton has created an absolutely superb information book on a topic that’s on many people’s minds at present.
Right away he addresses the reader with ‘Quick question: do you ever think about what things are made of? ’ and goes on to mention other materials such as metal, wood, glass and paper before focussing in on plastic; plastic in all its shapes, colours and sizes.
We learn about the discovery of the material by chemist Mr Baekeland and how rapidly it became enthusiastically used in pretty much anything you might think of.
Plastic in the places it should be is all well and good, but the trouble is it doesn’t biodegrade and therein lies the problem. (Neal explains what this means with two sequences of strip pictures)
What eventually happens is that much of this plastic finds its way into our oceans
where it creates big problems for the marine animals as well as forming massive garbage patches in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans, especially in the form of toxic microplastic particles.
All of us need to cut down on our use of plastic, especially that used only once, is what we’re powerfully reminded here …
Neal’s narrative style is perfectly pitched for the intended audience – there’s not a scrap of preachiness about it – and his mixed media illustrations are a powerful reminder of the ubiquitous problems of plastic waste.
Children and young people care deeply about the environment as they’ve already demonstrated and the book concludes with a ‘How you can help section’.
If the government is really serious about the environment, and in particular the terrible effects of throwaway plastic, then perhaps they should fund a copy of this timely book for all primary schools and nurseries.