November 27, 2012

Buy Glass, Not Plastic

The amount of plastic accumulating in the ocean gyres is growing. The Great Pacific Garbage patch has been described as a floating island of plastic trash, trapped by the currents of the gyre. But it’s not that discrete. The plastic waste breaks down into tiny pieces but never decomposes completely. Instead, it mingles with the ecosystem so much that fish, birds, and mammals mistake it for food. They ingest it or feed it to their young. If the plastic particle doesn’t harm them, then the toxic chemicals that are in the plastic will. Too much has been shown that verifies there is a negative impact on the wildlife in the ocean due to plastic trash accumulation, for us not to take action.

Animals ingest plastic

We currently recover only 5% of the plastics we produce. What happens to the rest of it? Roughly 50% is buried in landfills, some is remade into durable goods, and much of it remains “unaccounted for,” lost in the environment where it ultimately washes out to sea. —5gyres.org

A Challenge…

We are simultaneously proposing a challenge and accepting the challenge to reduce the amount of single-use plastics that I consume. Its commonplace to take re-usable shopping bags to the store, but we can up the ante by also taking re-usable produce bags. Or, try taking glass jars to the bulk food section and your personal mug to the cafe to avoid more single-use plastic trash.

Strawsome

We love breakfast smoothies, but what about that plastic straw? We searched the web for the best alternative to disposable plastic straws and found Strawesome, a company that makes beautiful and practical glass drinking straws. Teresa wrote to them because we think they are fantastic! Strawesome loves what we are doing with our film One Simple Question, so they have signed on as a sponsor.

Shop at their store using this special link between now and the end of the 2012, then they will donate 40% to our film One Simple Question.

The money will go directly to expenses related to editing, interviewing scientists, and motion graphic design. The best part is, they make fantastic holiday gifts for adults and children. So, use the link to buy a great holiday gift for yourself or a friend and help support the ocean and One Simple Question.


Facebook

Join my (sailingsimplicity) Facebook community and post a photo of yourself that depicts one way you reduce the amount of single-use plastics in your daily life. Share it on my Facebook wall so we can all learn some great new ideas. Be sure and caption it with your great idea. Each entry will be placed in a hat and a winner will be randomly selected on Monday the 26th. Be sure and share this post with your friends.

Strawsome

The winner will receive a beautiful straw to keep for themselves, and one to give away to a friend.

Be sure to tell them about single-use plastics and to check out 5gyres.com to learn about plastification of our oceans

5 Gyres

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Will LeRoy
    Feb 4 2013

    I am a big fan of glass and porcelain but those who work on and sail boats know what glass does to the impeller of a bilge pump. Cut’s to the hands and feet are prone to infection. Plastic sucks but one must know their limitations. This is not to argue for plastic but to make people aware there are more questions and opinions than answers to living on a boat.
    We can gather keen ideas about how to deal with it on land but the true test of anything is out there where the sea makes fools of us all.

    Reply
    • Feb 4 2013

      Will,
      I love your comment and I think you make some great points and its totally up to the individual to weigh the pros and cons.

      We teamed up with Strawesome because they represent a great ideal: to reduce the amount of single use plastics. Regardless of weather or not you prefer glass jars or plastic tupperware for food storage aboard a boat, I think its hard to argue in support of single use plastics, like straws, for the simple fact that you would have a lot of trash to carry around and in some ports, you would have a long walk before finding a recycling station to unload it. Better to wash your cups than to use a throw-away plastic one each day, even if you wash only in salt water!

      I actually prefer to store food in glass jars because the accumulating BPAs in the body are a health problem and also I don’t like how plastic assumes the flavor of whatever was stored in there. I haven’t broken a jar yet, but I know accidents happen and things get dropped. However, if I worried like that then I wouldn’t have all sorts of things aboard that were typical aboard my boat: bobby pins, erasers, coins. The kitty toys would be a big problem!

      I know there are some nice stainless steel food storage containers. I think that would be ideal, then it would avoid the broken glass problem and the BPA problem. However, I think they are quite expensive.

      But I do think you are right in that things we live with ashore need to be considered differently when living aboard a boat.

      Teresa

      Reply
  2. Feb 26 2013

    What about those BPA free stainless steel mugs? Wouldn’t that be a better alternative or no? (and why not)

    Reply
    • admin
      Feb 26 2013

      We love stainless… definitely the way to go.

      Reply

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