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Hi, there! It's that time of year to talk about...

The Great American Cleanup

Hi, there! It's that time of year to talk about...

Team Up 2 Clean Up

Recycling & Reusing

Single-use Plastic

Single-use plastic is plastic that’s intended to be used only once before it’s tossed. That includes plastic grocery bags, straws and coffee stirrers, most food packaging, styrofoam to-go containers and more. Refusing it or using renewable or recyclable options could make a big difference.

You know how it is. You check out of the grocery store, grabbing your plastic bags. You peek inside and see plastic bottles of soda and detergent, as well as more plastic bags filled with selected fruits and veggies. On the way home, you pull into the drive-thru to get your favorite tea or coffee drink, and the barista hands you a plastic cup with a plastic lid and a straw…

It’s fair to say that we have become accustomed to the convenience of single-use plastic items.

What we may not realize is the impact all that plastic is doing to our world.

GOOD TO KNOW

  • 300 million—The tons of plastic produced globally each year
  • 12 percent—The amount of plastic that gets recycled
  • Five trillion—The number of pieces of microplastic in ocean, with one garbage-truck-load added every minute
  • 11,000—The number of pieces of microplastic ingested by humans each year from seafood
  • 780,000—The number of microplastics humans will ingest by the end of the century if trends continue
  • 12 minutes—The useful lifespan of the average plastic bag

GOOD TO DO

  • Choose to refuse single-use plastic products
  • Choose renewable or recyclable products instead…
    • Paper or stainless steel straws instead of plastic straws
    • Reusable drink bottles and cups instead of plastic bottles
    • Canvas or other reusable bags instead of plastic shopping or produce bags
    • Glass or metal containers instead of plastic/styrofoam take-out or to-go containers
    • Wax paper, foil or silicone wrap instead of plastic wrap
    • Metal cutlery or other reusable silverware instead of plastic cutlery (forks, sporks, knives, spoons)
    • Biodegradable holders instead of plastic six-pack rings
    • Bamboo toothbrushes instead of plastic toothbrushes
    • Cotton swabs with paper stems instead of plastic stems
    • Masking tape instead of plastic tape

How knowledgeable are you about single-use plastic? Take our fun quiz and find out…

Are you a plastic rookie or plastic fantastic? Take The Quiz to Find Out

IS YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS A BAY STAR?

We live in a beautiful region surrounded by water. It impacts everything from the food we eat to the fun we have as well as our economic livelihood. Our daily actions have a lasting impact and it's up to us to protect and restore our waterways. It takes a community of individuals making small changes to make a difference. Getting involved in the Bay Star programs is one way you can be part of the effort to protect our region's most defining natural resource, water.

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