The Pacific Garbage Patch

Do you ever think about what happens to all the plastic items you buy and use in your daily life? Do you ever give any thought to the fact that a plastic bottle can take up to 450 years to degrade? If you don’t, you are not alone; most people don’t even think twice about it. Well, our addiction to plastics is really causing a huge problem to our environment, and the many ecosystems around the globe. This problem deserves our attention!

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I get it, buying a plastic bottle of water is super convenient, and from a manufacturing standpoint for the companies making them, it is also very cost effective. But this is where we as consumers need to become more educated as to what happens to all this plastic, and the garbage that we throw out daily/weekly in our homes, offices, schools, etc. If more people knew about how all this plastic is affecting our environment, I think more people would stop and think twice before continuing to purchase more plastic products. This is where the documentary Plastic Paradise comes in; here is another gem (on Netflix) I wish everyone could watch, simply to learn more about the topic, and become aware! Do yourself a favor, and give this doc a watch!

The information provided in this documentary was super eye-opening for me! I am now much more conscious about the things I choose to purchase when I’m at the store or out and about shopping. Simple changes like, opting for drinks in glass containers instead of plastic, or using reusable grocery bags or paper bags at the store instead of the plastic bags, or using reusable cups instead of styrofoam cups; all these minor changes can add up and have a major impact in the long run. Oh, and receipts (as in the receipt paper)!! Wow I will never think of those the same way again after watching this…you might want to think twice about taking/handling that receipt that the attendant at the checkout counter is handing you. Did you know that the receipt paper is actually coated with BPA, and when we handle that receipt paper with our hands we are actually being exposed to AND absorbing levels of BPA directly into our skin?!! Yikes!!

Anyway, I could easily provide a dozen more links on this plastics/garbage issue, but my point here is not to write a research paper. This documentary alone is very comprehensive and does a great job of illustrating the cause and effect relationship of this garbage problem – so I’ll leave it at that.

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We as consumers have the power to drive change; use your dollar to vote for less plastic by simply purchasing less plastic products, and opt for the alternatives – glass, aluminum, paper, etc. We can drive up the demand for those items, and drive down the demand for plastics one purchase at a time. And make those small adjustments in your every day life; reuse, recycle! Moreover, this topic is not just limited to plastics, this is all garbage in general! We never really give any thought to what happens to our garbage after we throw it out; but it is in our best interest, and that of our precious environment that we start to give a damn! I mean, I am no saint myself, some items just don’t come in a plastic alternative packaging yet. Or sometimes when you are traveling or on the go, you can’t really find any good plastic alternatives- so you are forced to buy plastic. Nonetheless, I am learning, and now that I am aware of the issue, I am making a conscious effort to buy less plastic products.

Also, while I’m on this topic of plastic, I also highly recommend checking out the
documentary called Tapped; this will really open your eyes to the scam that is the bottled water industry, and the poisonous chemicals that are leaching into the water in your handy dandy convenient plastic bottle…scary!

 

Gain some awareness, watch the documentary!