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Plastic never goes away.

Plastic is a durable material made to last forever. Plastic cannot biodegrade; it continues to breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces called microplastics and nanoplastics.

Plastic spoils our groundwater.

There are tens of thousands of landfills across the globe. Buried beneath each one, plastic leachate containing toxic chemicals seeps into groundwater and flows downstream into lakes and rivers.

Plastic attracts other pollutants.

Manufacturers' additives in plastics, like flame retardants, BPAs and PVCs, can leach their own toxins. These oily poisons repel water and stick to petroleum-based objects like plastic debris.

Plastic threatens wildlife.

Entanglement, ingestion and habitat disruption all result from plastic ending up in our natural environment.

Plastic piles up in the environment.

Americans alone discard more than 30 million tons of plastic a year; only 8 percent of it gets recycled. The rest ends up in landfills or becomes 'litter', and a small portion is incinerated. 

Plastic poisons our food web.

Even plankton, the tiniest creatures in our oceans, are ingesting microplastics and absorbing their toxins. As predators ingest their prey, plastics in the stomachs of smaller creatures travel through the food web.

Plastic affects human health.

Chemicals leached by plastics are in the blood and tissue of nearly all of us. Exposure to plastics is linked to cancers, birth defects, impaired immunity, endocrine disruption and other ailments.

Plastic costs billions to abate. 

Everything suffers: tourism, recreation, business, the health of humans, animals, fish and birds—because of plastic pollution.

Around 80 percent of marine litter originates on land. 

Plastic can travel many miles to make its way into the ocean, traveling via wind, rain, and storm runoff.

Scientists estimate that more than eight million metric tons of plastic enters our oceans every year. That number is expected to increase.


Wean yourself off disposable plastics.

Ninety percent of the plastic items in our daily lives are used once and then discarded: grocery bags, plastic wrap, disposable cutlery, straws, coffee-cup lids. Take note of how often you rely on these products and replace them with reusable versions. It only takes a few times of bringing your own bags to the store, silverware to the office, or travel mug to Starbucks before it becomes habit.

Stop buying water.

Each year, close to 20 billion plastic bottles are tossed in the trash. Carry a reusable bottle in your bag, and you’ll never be caught having to resort to a Poland Spring or Evian again. If you’re nervous about the quality of your local tap water, look for a model with a built-in filter.

Put pressure on manufacturers and lawmakers.

Though we can make a difference through our own habits, corporations obviously have a much bigger footprint. If you believe a company could be smarter about its packaging, make your voice heard. Write a letter, send a tweet, or hit them where it really hurts: Give your money to a more sustainable competitor. 


Buy in bulk.

Single-serving yogurts, travel-size toiletries, tiny packages of nuts—consider the product-to-packaging ratio of items you tend to buy often and select a bigger container instead of buying several smaller ones over time. 

Support Organizations Addressing Plastic Pollution. 

There are many non-profit organizations working to reduce and eliminate ocean plastic pollution in a variety of different ways, The important message is that we all do something, no matter how small.

Participate In or Organize a Beach or Cleanup!

Purchase items secondhand!


Cook more!

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