That Majestic Plastic Bag
Have you ever wondered where all those plastic bottles, jugs, and containers you collect end up after they’re hauled off to the recycling center? The answer is not very comforting. Right now, less than 7% is recycled, and the rest of it either ends up in a landfill or is sent to China for recycling. Plastic that is not disposed of properly finds its way into our waterways and then into our ocean, where it is mistaken for food, and chokes or starves birds and marine animals to death Making plastic depletes finite petroleum resources and pumps toxic chemicals into air and water. When it’s useful life is over, we can’t get rid of it. Unless it’s been incinerated, every piece of plastic ever manufactured remains on earth today.
Click here to read more about the hazards of plastic and then move into action!
It’s time to rethink how we as a society use plastic, and find alternatives for the products that we’ve come to depend upon. Here are some things that you can do right now:
- Reduce. Reuse. Rethink . . . Only then recycle. You’ve heard this one before . .
- Avoid Buying Plastic. Be conscious of what you buy, and be sure to avoid products with excessive packaging, especially in disposable products. Read Fake Plastic Fish to learn more about the impacts of plastic and discover tips for reducing your use!
- Stop Using Plastic Bags! Buy that reusable bag when you forget to bring your own (you’ll soon remember to bring it along). By the way paper bags are no better. Click here to read more.
- Take Your Own Containers. When you eat out, or order carry-out food, take your containers with you and explain why you choose not to have your food in plastic containers.
- Educate Consumers and Businesses. All need to understand the hazards associated with plastics, including pollution and litter.
- Organize a Plastic Bag Ban. New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Manhattan Beach, California have done just that.
- Recycle Other’s Litter. Every time you see plastic litter, pick it up and recycle – or dispose of it properly.
- Take Part in Stream, River and Beach Cleanups. Cleanups are effective at drawing attention to plastic pollution and help educate the public.