What’s even more alarming than the destruction of our environment and the animals that live in it, is the quiet price humans are paying for our rabid disposable consumption. Could animals entangled, with bellies filled with plastic, be indicators of a future for human beings?
Did you know that less than 5% of plastic in the world is actually recycled? According to the Environmental Protection Agency, in 2008 93% of plastic in the US that could have been recycled was thrown away. And those bottles with the redemption value? 62% were not recycled. Even if it does get recycled, most of it gets “down-cycled” and sent to developing countries like China, to create cheaper products. Basically, a single-use disposable plastic like a water bottle never returns as a water bottle again.
Here are small simple steps we can all take as consumers and humans, who share this beautiful environment.
REFUSE disposable plastic. There are actually 4 R’s-REFUSE, REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
1) When you go to the coffee shop–bring your own mug, or if you are staying there for some time, ask for it in a “for here” mug. Baristas are so quick to automatically make your drink in a single disposable plastic cup.
2) Bring your own bag to the market or store. How many times have you got to the check out and they put it in a plastic bag before you even pay for it! We associate grocery bags as something easy to bring, but how about when you go shopping at the mall? If you are like me, I often forget. Solution? Keep a foldable bag in your purse–they are small and compact. and you can to put all those fabulous deals in it instead of adding to your collection of tote bags that are piled up in your closet. oh wait. that’s my closet.
3) Carry a reusable stainless steel or aluminum water bottle instead of buying bottled water and install a filter at home. Have you ever tasted bottled water after its been in your car, under the sun? You can practically taste the plastic. Not only is it gross, but if you carry your own bottle, you wont be drinking water with harmful toxins like Bisphenol-A (it leaches out from the plastic into the water). If you dont know what this means, watch the documentary…again.
4) Say no to straws. Plastic straws make up over 33% of trash found on beaches.
There are so many little ways that will make an impactful change. Join the conversation and add to this list! comment below!