Internet giant Alibaba might have sold for close to 31 billion US dollar at China’s Single’s Day, but author Zhang Lijia notices also growing concern on the massive shopping festival, she tells Upm Pulp. Consumerism and environmental concerns emerge with the growing turnover.
The Singles’ Day shopping bonanza means also over one billion packages flying across the globe. Millions of packages add up to tonnes of cardboard, plastic, tape and bubble wrap. Along with impressive sales figures, Singles’ Day has also become to signify a huge amount of waste. Last year Singles’ Day sales resulted in an estimated 300 000 tonnes of unrecycled packaging waste in China. Recently many have started to voice concern over the impact of the one-day shopping spree on the environment. One of those uneasy about the blatant commercialism is the author and journalist Lijia Zhang.
“Online shopping has really caught on in China in a big way,” Zhang says. “The Chinese Government has realized the problems for the environment and has set a body to oversee the environmental impact of logistics companies. But many ordinary people don’t know or care about the disastrous result this shopping festival has on the environment.”
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