The Final Straw.

 

better buzzed iced dirty chai just say no single use plastic straws

“just say no”

So, as we’ve already discussed… I’ve been a little lot bummed about the election. I kinda can’t shake it, and all I can think about is what I can do to make a difference. Not regarding the results, but regarding the state, and the future of our country.

I’m hoping and praying that if any good is to come of this, it’s that more people are going to get up, get out, get involved, and make a stand for what they hold dear to them. So that’s what I’m going to do, little by little, one day, one step at a time.

The environment is a biggie for me, and an incoming administration that doesn’t believe that global warming among other environmental issues are a serious problem basically terrifies me. My future children, grandchildren, and generations to come deserve to grow up on the same beautiful planet that I did.

So… I’m looking for simple ways that can really add up and make a difference, and today I’m talking single use straws. We all know plastic bags are a big problem, and so many counties have been making a difference by charging for single use bags or abolishing them all together. But what about single use straws?

Here’s the deal with plastic. It does not biodegrade, it photo degrades into smaller and smaller pieces, which gets ingested by marine and land animals, and into our food chain. If it’s recycled, only a small amount is actually used, and the rest ends up back in our landfills. It is in our air, in our crops, and has even been found in mother’s breastmilk. We’re talking plastic… in breastmilk… not good. Basically every piece of plastic ever made is still floating around somewhere in our environment, or in our bodies.

Furthermore, these broken down plastics that we are absorbing through our food and other environmental factors in the form of BPA are endocrine disruptors and lead to a wide array of health disorders.

For the numbers peeps, let’s break this down: 80% of all marine debris found in the ocean is land based, and 80-90% of the marine debris is made from plastic. The U.S. makes up 5% of the world’s population, consumes 30% of the world’s resources, and creates 30% of the world’s waste. In the U.S. alone we use 500 million straws a day. Simply stated, we are heavy users… and it’s having a heavy impact on the environment.

So… what can you do? The simplest answer is to just say no. Go straw-less. It’s really pretty simple. When ordering a drink at a bar or restaurant just ask for no straw. A lot of restaurants are already only bringing straws upon request. If you’re a big fan of straws, like me, you can B.Y.O.S. Bring your own straw. If I’m at a sit down meal, a straw is unnecessary… but if I’m on the go with my beverage, I’ll bring my own. I’m a big fan of stainless steel straws for my smoothies and iced coffees.

Wanna take it even further? Just say no to single use plastic anything and everything. At this point, plastic is so firmly embedded in our modern day lives, but single use plastic just isn’t necessary. Reusable bags, reusable water bottles, and reusable straws are a great place to start.

If you want to learn more about plastic and it’s impact on the environment, Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a documentary I highly recommend.

The point is to do what you can with the resources that you have. Don’t feel like you are powerless. These small actions performed on a regular basis can really add up.

What causes are you passionate about? Please share your tips and tricks on how the everyday girl / guy can get involved. Thx!

x, K

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