You can save wildlife. Have you ever wondered what happens to the used plastic that you unassumingly toss in the trash?
Did you know that it takes 1000 years for one plastic bag to break down? Tossed out plastic including grocery bags and plasic bottles are ruining our environment and killing wildlife.
“Plastic bags kill animals. About 100,000 animals such as dolphins, turtles whales, penguins are killed every year due to plastic bags. Many animals ingest plastic bags, mistaking them for food, and therefore die. And worse, the ingested plastic bag remains intact even after the death and decomposition of the animal. Thus, it lies around in the landscape where another victim may ingest it.” http://www.buzzle.com/articles/environmental-pollution-the-harmful-effects-of-plastic-bags.html
I stumbled over this page on a website today and quickly went quiet with the sheer sadness of it. It shows the remains of birds that have picked through trash found in the ocean and died from the plastic they have ingested; the young died from plastic fed to them by their parents.
What can you do?
Five Strategies to Reduce the Environmental Impact of Plastics
1. Reduce your use
Choose products that use little or no packaging. Select packaging materials that can be recycled into new packaging – such as glass and paper. If people refuse plastic as a packaging material, the industry will decrease production for that purpose, and the associated problems such as energy use, pollution, and adverse health effects will diminish.
2. Reuse containers
Did you know that refillable plastic containers can be reused about 25 times? Choose to reuse containers rather than ss them out.
3. Require producers to take back resins
Support legislation that gets manufacturers directly involved with plastic disposal and closing the material loop. Reprocessing can be made easier by limiting the number of container types and shapes, using only one type of resin in each container, making collapsible containers, eliminating pigments, using water-dispersible adhesives for labels, and phasing out associated metals such as aluminum seals. Container and resin makers can help develop the reprocessing infrastructure by taking back plastic from consumers.
4. Legislatively require recycled content
Requiring that all containers be composed of a percentage of post-consumer material reduces the amount of virgin material consumed.
5. Standardize labeling and inform the public
The chasing arrows symbol on plastics is an example of an ambiguous and misleading label. Significantly different standardized labels for “recycled,” “recyclable,” and “made of plastic type X” must be developed.
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