Plastics are polluting our waterways, choking our coral reefs and being eaten by birds and marine animals. The average American takes home 1,500 plastic bags a year, which are used for about 12 minutes. Most plastic bags are not recycled, and the ones that make it to landfill (vs. the waterways) take 500 years to break down. Plastic water bottles are another sad story: 1,500 water bottles are used every second in the USA, and globally 1 million are used every minute…with only about 10% being recycled! What are we doing to our world?
This is not a new story. Environmentalists have been touting the message of “death by plastic” for years, but it seems there may finally be a political will to raise the issue on an international scale. Canada will be using it’s 2018 G7 presidency to push a “plastics charter or a zero waste goal”, in order to help save our oceans. Ideas on how to reduce plastics include an all-out ban, taxes, or incentives to individuals or businesses. Don’t forget substituting plastic produce bags for compostable bags at the grocery store, and just making it easier for people to do the right thing (a BIG thank you to Trader Joe’s who implemented this recently!!! ). The success of a G7 charter could then be more widely adapted by the G20 with more industrialized nations offering teachings and support to developing countries.
This is not rocket science, it is common sense and the time to do something is now. I stand with you, Canada. Let’s do this!