Imagine 25 years from now you and your family take a trip to the beach, you pile out of the car, and can hear the wave rushing to the shore. As you walk to the beach you see a couple bottles, caps and other debris littered as you walk and once you get to the beach you are slightly disappointed at the sight before you. Little to no seagulls flying around begging for food. Sandpipers nowhere in sight and every few steps you're kicking empty plastic pieces around and out of your way. Gone are the days of sea shell hunting because now the most that washes on shore is empty bottles, caps and ripped up plastic bags.
That beach day walk could soon be a very big reality for all of us and all of our beaches. Sea turtles and dolphins can't tell the difference between a jellyfish and a plastic bag floating around in the open ocean. They eat it and they slowly die. It's a sad but honest truth.
What's to blame for the fact that by 2050 there will be plastic than fish in the ocean? Us, humans, and our plastic/convenience addiction. Years ago when disposable plastics were invented, they were invented with the thought of making life easier; however not much thought was given to the consequences of the grab 'n' go, toss-it-out-and-forget-about-it lifestyle. Something that most of us have become so accustomed to we feel it's not worth trying to do it any other way.
However, if we don't make changes, soon future generations and even ourselves won't have things that we have now to enjoy. There's a very big chance that children in 10-20 years won't be able to go whale watching. There will not be sea turtle nests to hatch on the beach and feeding seagulls your cold soggy fries will be nothing but a memory and story we tell.
However, there are things that we can do to change it to help reverse the damage that's happening daily, and slowly but surely we can end plastic pollution.
The ocean clean up project was created by a 19-year-old student who has been rather successful in instigating the biggest ocean clean up we've seen; however, it won't do much good if we are consistently replacing what's removed with more plastic. Think of it this way: if you take a book off a shelf to clean off the shelf but someone adds three more books, you'll never get the shelf clean. The same concept is happening, but with plastic.
A lot of people don't know, but the tiny bits of plastic that are in the ocean is slowly seeping into our meals. How? Because fish eat them thinking they are food.
Ever heard of Midway Island? Midway Island is an uninhabited island about 2000 km from any other coastline. It's home to the albatross birds, the only living creature that inhabits the island, and was until recent years untouched by man. Unfortunately, now the albatross are slowly and rather painfully dying. Why? Plastic. They are eating nothing but plastic. Mistaking floating pieces for bugs or small fish. You can learn more about midway island here.
So what can be done? A lot of things can be done, and my favorite quote is the subtitle of this article.
"It is the greatest of all mistakes to do nothing because you can only do little." (Quote from Sydney Smith)
A little can go a long way. Educate your friends. Share this article. Buy reusable grocery bags and support plastic bag bans. Did you know that there was a sea turtle who had a plastic spork removed from its nose? Encourage reusable or edible silverware. Yes, I said edible; check out Bakeys or Amazon for edible silverware.
Buy a glass or stainless steel reusable water bottle and straws. Yes, you have to refill them, but they even have sets of 8 on Amazon or other sites so you can prefill them all (takes maybe 5 minutes) and put them in your fridge. Not only do you save money, but you save animals.
They are even starting to create container-less, up to 80 use shampoo that looks like a bar of soap. Check it out here!
Try to buy less packaged food in plastic; look for container-fewer stores if your city offers them, and/or buy in bulk. Ask for paper whenever possible and be aware of the companies and organizations that are determined to help save our marine and wildlife as well as the planet by reducing reusing and eliminating plastic and plastic pollution.
If you see a plastic bottle or piece on the ground, recycle it or throw it away.
We are all a part of the problem, but we can also all be a part of the solution and work together towards eliminating the high use of plastic and plastic pollution.
No one should be eating plastic for dinner. Animal or human.
Glass Water Bottle By Sandcloud: 10% of profits go to help marine life.