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"Use the reusable and discard the disposable"

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The environment is a fundamental part of human life.

In addition, it has a direct impact on quality of life and health.

Therefore, a healthy environment that provides for a healthy and dignified life must be considered as a basic need for personal and collective development and for the well-being of society.In recent times, concern for the environment has become a fundamental axis of the work of the Spanish Red Cross in order to improve people's quality of life.

Defending and protecting the environment through education and environmental sustainability is one of the priority objectives of the Spanish Red Cross.

What we want is to educate in values ??and promote habits that respect our environment, creating an ecological awareness linked to sustainable development and promoting actions to mitigate climate change and preserve and improve our environment.For all these reasons, the Spanish Red Cross promotes the defense of the environment inside and outside our country, through the development of activities for improvement and environmental protection, as well as awareness and training campaigns to achieve a better balance between human beings and nature.

also in order to improve the situation of the most vulnerable people.

We cannot forget that the activities of the Spanish Red Cross must be consistent with the improvement of the environment, promoting environmental values ??inside and outside our doors.To achieve these objectives, in the Totana Red Cross we have launched an Awareness Program on Climate Change and environmental conservation where we intend to carry out concrete and impactful actions that help to make people in our environment aware of the importance of the three "R's" Recycle, Reuse and Reduce consumption and emissions to slow down climate change as much as possible.Climate change is all of us since it affects us all and we can all do our bit to stop it.

Our health depends on the environment and on our ability to avoid the degradation of the environment due to climate change to the best of our ability.

Our agriculture, our mountains and our society also depend on the ability we have to conserve our environment with actions to fight against the generation of waste and climate change.In this context, the first action within this program will consist of a campaign on the use of reusable masks.

The health, economic and social crisis that has triggered the COVID pandemic in our municipality and the rest of the world is causing a series of effects that will affect us all as a global society, and that we will still need years to assimilate.

In addition to the personal and family misfortunes caused by COVID, other important and very harmful effects must be added, such as environmental problems that derive from the production, use and disposal of sanitary and hygienic material in massive proportions that have never been seen before.

.The use of disposable masks for protection against the virus is considered the most common and widespread residue associated with the pandemic that is triggering alerts due to its potential impact on the environment.

In addition, this use is going to consolidate to a greater or lesser extent in the coming years worldwide.

These masks are made mainly of plastic products derived from petroleum, in addition to being single-use with impossible recycling.

In a municipality like Totana with more than 32,000 inhabitants, the daily use of thousands of these masks is leading to the generation of significant amounts of non-recyclable waste destined for landfills or incineration plants.If we use 1 mask a day, it means that we will throw away around 3 million masks in the next 3 months with the important footprint in the middle that this can entail.From the Totana Red Cross we call for the use of reusable masks with filters capable of filtering viral particles.

The use of reusable masks that have adequate filtration of viral particles can make an important contribution that all of us can make to the environment.

The aim is to avoid the indiscriminate use of disposable materials that carries an associated risk of ending up in the sea or rivers and damaging the fauna of these spaces.

Each reusable mask, with the exception of the specific use of specific masks by healthcare personnel, can be reused dozens of times as long as it is treated correctly.That is why our proposal from the Totana Red Cross is to invite the neighbors to use the reusable masks and discard the disposable ones.

We also propose the evaluation of this action by monitoring the use of these reusable masks in our municipality as far as possible in the coming months.Pedro Martinez GomezHead of the Awareness Program on Climate Change of the Totana Red Cross 

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