We understand. We really do. Straws are fun; convenient; and we use them in every beverage. Who knew that these seemingly benign modern conveniences are also hazards and dangerous? The PLASTIC straw is a particularly sneaky, insidious hazard to life, as we know it. Consider the following facts:
- In the US alone, we consume over 500 million straws per day
- We (yes, you) use these straws for about 20 minutes, and then toss them.
- Plastic is NOT It breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces. Think plastic particles in food – ingested by fish, animals, and humans.
- Plastic makes up 90% of all trash floating in the ocean.
- Most plastic contains polypropylene and BPA. This can leak chemicals into liquids and is linked to obesity, on-set puberty, and some cancers.
What can you and your kids do?
- Simply request “NO STRAW” at any restaurant, including fast food places.
- For small children – use sippy cups; Juice boxes and plastic straws can be replaced by simply pouring juice or liquid into reusable cups with reusable straws.
- Buy paper straws, easily found at stores: Target; Walmart; Stop & Shop; Big Y and online.
- Use straws made out of bamboo, steel, reusable plastic, even glass.
- .Carry your own bottle, with straws built into the design
- Take your own juice and beverages with you and your kids, wherever you go. Plan it; pack it.
- Watch the movie: “Bag It: is your life too plastic? (bagtitmovie.com )
- Take the pledge: onelessstraw.org
- Do your own research: https://get-green-now.com/environmental-impact-plastic-straws/ ; http://www.plasticpollutioncoalition.org/ http://www.ecocycle.org/bestrawfreepledge
Some people absolutely need straws (certain ability challenges; very young children) – we can help support a better approach so those who need to sip, can do so, with confidence and commitment to a better, healthier environment.
Grateful to our community of recyclers.
This article was writen by Share the Warmth committee member Carol J. Lebold.