The best way to sum up Addicted to Plastic is what one activist says right at the beginning of the documentary: “Plastic is being thrown away; the problem is there is no away.” This excellent documentary by Ian Connacher airs Monday, January 5, 2009 at 10 P.M. on CBC Newsworld The Passionate Eye.
For the sake of ironic full disclosure, the documentary was sent to me on a plastic DVD in a plastic jewel case in a recycled cardboard envelope with a plastic film on it.
A good documentary is informative without being for eggheads only or dumbed down. It should also be entertaining, easy to watch, and have a “Holy &^%!” moment or two. Addicted to Plastic is all of those things and way cool.
The United Nations says there are 46,000 pieces of plastic per square mile of ocean. Researchers suggest the plastic to plankton ratio in some vast ocean areas is a scary 10 to 1. Since plastic does not degrade but only disintegrates, fish see plastic bits as shrimp and fish eggs and so on and eat it. What’s worse is some plastics attract other pollutants, consequently those pollutants are also ingested.
Addicted to Plastic does everything well; There are National Geographic moments where the viewer is on board a vessel investigating the presence of plastic in the ocean; there are 60 Minutes moments where various experts are interviewed; and clips from old plastic industry informational films.
There is also a very interesting and concise history of plastic segment that stands on its own. The segment on recycling or downcycling is fascinating.
I have to admit though my favorite moment was the really cartoon on the life of a nerdle, the plastic pellet used for manufacturing.
One can only hope Addicted to Plastic has the same shelf life as the product itself.
This documentary by Ian Connacher airs Monday January 5, 2009 at 10 P.M. on CBC Newsworld – The Passionate Eye. It should also come back a few times. Earth Day would be smart scheduling.