Impact of Paper Packaging on the Environment and Health

Photo: Maksindo

The cause of natural disasters is not only the pile of non-degradable waste but also caused by deforestation. Deforestation is an activity carried out by humans deliberately to provide land for settlements and infrastructure development. In addition, deforestation also occurs due to the production of paper-based products, such as paper and cardboard packaging. Supposedly cutting trees for industrial purposes should be followed by replanting activities. However, illegal logging still occurs frequently and the time needed to return deforested forest to stable forest (ideal ecosystem and tree density) is tens of years or even a hundred years.

Apart from harming the environment, paper packaging also has an impact on health. Paper packaging is often used to wrap food. Usually, the paper used is brown and laminated by plastic, we often find it when buying packaged rice. However, several studies and news have emerged showing that paper packaging contains Bisphenol A (BPA) compounds. These compounds are commonly found in plastic bottles and are known to interfere with the function of hormones in the body. It turns out that it is quite difficult for humans to be free from exposure to BPA, and it is even known that the concentration of BPA contained in paper or cardboard packaging is very high.

Therefore, we must be wiser in choosing and using packaging products, especially single-use packaging.