Various blue beach pollution items made into art display in sand

Easy Ways You Can Fight Plastic Pollution

Plastic has greatly aided society. Inexpensive, durable and lightweight, it’s been a game-changer for things like medical devices and housing materials and has made our everyday lives quicker, easier and more on-the-go friendly. Yet there’s a dark side.

Plastic never goes away. It never degrades, only breaking into smaller pieces. Less than 10% is recycled, and much of what we do recycle is actually shipped overseas to be incinerated. Currently, there are about 5 billion metric tons of plastic trash in landfills and natural environments, and that number is set to double by 2050. Experts also say that by 2050 there will be more plastic, by weight, in the ocean than fish.

It’s become impossible to sit on a beach, take a drive or go for a long walk without seeing evidence of the problem, and now is the time to make a difference. The key is reducing how much plastic you are using, not recycling, and small changes you make can help significantly.

Reusable water bottles

  1. Avoid polystyrene (more commonly known as Styrofoam). It is rarely recyclable.
  2. Do not buy bottles of water. Instead, use a reusable bottle and try purifying agents like natural charcoal filters. If you are in a situation where a one-time bottle is necessary, pick a glass option over plastic.
  3. Bring your own bags to the grocery store. If you forget, ask for paper instead of plastic.
  4. Skip bagging your produce, and just wash thoroughly when you are home.
  5. Replace plastic baggies with reusable silicone zip-top options (they can also be used as great, travel-friendly makeup bags).
  6. Refuse a straw. Every day, 500 million plastic straws are used in the US, many of which end up in the ocean.
  7. Go topless. If you’re taking coffee to-go, skip the lid if you can. They are made of a form of Styrofoam and are known endocrine disruptors and suspected carcinogens.

All strides count. Change your habits now and join the fight against the global health crisis of plastic pollution in the ocean.

Charcoal filters