Hope You’re Not Tired of Talking Plastic

by | Jul 10, 2019

Hope You’re Not Tired of Talking Plastic. Having trouble giving up the plastic straw? Keep meaning to bring your own bag to the store?

Maybe Plastic Free July can help motivate you or help you get as close to plastic free as you can.
On the Plastic Free July website, you can take their challenge to do your best to be plastic free for the month. It’s only one month … but it’s long enough for everyone to study their plastic use and recycling habits and see how they can make adjustments. Maybe you could challenge your family or your office and perhaps it will cause companies to take a look at how they might improve their recycling programs.

Plastic Free July was created by the Plastic Free Foundation whose mission is a world free of plastic waste. Founded in Australia in 2011, the organization today has become a worldwide movement with millions of participants in more than 170 countries …

  • MPASS - Plastic recyclingAir New Zealand is removing individual plastic water bottles from several flights for the month. The airline figures their actions can keep almost a half a million bottles out of landfills. The company also says action will reduce carbon emissions by reducing weight on the aircraft.
  • In Hong Kong, a group called HP Ploggers has an invitation on the Event Brite site asking people to sign up for a clean-up Cheung Chau island. If you haven’t heard of plogging, it’s the combination of jogging and picking up litter. The idea started with Stockholm’s runners’ desire to help keep their city clean. It has spread across the world and today, if you do an Instagram search for “plogging,” you get over 70,000 posts.
  • The World Wildlife Fund South Africa has partnered with two other nonprofits in a Plastic Free Mzansi (“Mzansi” is an informal term for South Africa).

Here at home, Greenpeace USA offers great suggestions to make the plastic free effort work for you in an article on the organization’s website: “How to Participate in Plastic Free July.”

  • Beginner: You can pick one disposable item to avoid all month, like single-use plastic straws, coffee cups, grocery bags, or water bottles, and create a new solid habit of bringing your own reusables!
  • Intermediate: You can commit to eliminating those big four (single-use plastic straws, coffee cups, grocery bags, or water bottles) or another mixture of single-use plastic items you notice in your lifestyle.
  • Expert: You can go all in and avoid all disposable plastic all month!

We’re going to hear more and more about recycling as the percentage of people concerned about the environment and climate change continues to grow – in the U.S. and around the world.

Bloomberg News reported in an article last month “Here’s How Climate Change Is Viewed Around the World,” that “Climate change is global in nature, and is creeping higher in surveys of voter concerns. They cite a recent survey of the European Union’s 27 countries (excluding the U.K. which showed that “combating climate change and protecting the environment” was cited as a concern by 43% of respondents, up from 35% a year ago. While it wasn’t the #1 concern in every country, it was in seven countries (Sweden, the Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany), up from five just six months ago.

In the U.S., there are several recent polls which show that concern about the environment and global warming is rising:

  • A Gallup poll this spring found that: “Worry about global warming is up and majorities of Americans support proposals to reduce the use of fossil fuels while increasing the production of wind and solar energy.”
  • In their recent study, “Climate Change in the American Mind: April 2019,” the Yale University Program Climate Change Communication, found that “About half of Americans (54%) say they have thought about global warming more than ‘a little.’”
  • The Pew Research Center released a survey earlier this year which showed, among other things, that “A majority of U.S. adults (56%) say protecting the environment should be a top priority for the president and Congress, while a smaller share (44%) says the same about dealing with global climate change.”

Other new news on plastics:

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