Each month, it is estimated that 129 billion non-reusable face masks and 65 billion gloves are used and disposed of globally.
A lot of this waste is having a harmful effect on wildlife.
Non-reusable masks take 450 years to biodegrade.
Used face masks are bio-hazard waste; generally required to be destroyed by incineration not discarded in parking lots (anybody seen a blue biohazard bag lately?).
Health authorities have warned that surgical masks are not an effective protection against the virus.
“Those masks are only effective so long as they are dry,” said Professor Yvonne Cossart of the Department of Infectious Disease at the University of Sydney.
“As soon as they become saturated with moisture in your breath they stop doing their job and pass on the droplets.”
Professor Cossart said that could take as little as 15 or 20 minutes’s use, after which the mask would need to be changed.
N95 respirators (or surgical masks) are made with a 0.3 micron filter.
Their name comes from the fact that 95 per cent of particles having a diameter of 0.3 microns are filtered by the mask.
Unfortunately, corona viruses are approximately 0.125 microns in diameter.
Penetration of cloth masks by viral particles was almost 97 per cent and for surgical masks 44 per cent.
Even bacteria, approximately 10 times the volume of corona viruses, are poorly impeded by both cloth masks and disposable surgical masks.
A study by the University of East Anglia concluded that wearing masks was of no benefit and could increase infection.
Experts in respiratory disease and infection protection from the University of Illinois have explained that face masks have no use in everyday life – neither as self-protection nor to protect other people.
A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine concluded that neither fabric masks nor surgical masks can prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The New England Journal of Medicine (May 2020) concluded that masks offer little or no protection and that the call for masks to be compulsory was an irrational fear reflex.
These comments are based on scientific/medical studies over years which our legislators are well aware of but take no notice of, sadly.
Taking the “better to be seen to do something” (approach rather) than face reality.
COVID is in the animal population according to Pennsylvania State University Scientists and therefore cannot be eradicated.
Email, Dec 26 Tim Bard, Tascott