Sunday, February 14, 2010

Day 96 - Feb. 12

life guard tower 26- Ocean Park, Santa Monica CA
trash collected for 20 minutes
2.2 pounds
395.6 total pounds

As you scroll through this post you may start to ask yourself, "What's up with all these mediocre pictures of straws?" Well, I'll tell you. I FOUND 32 STRAWS IN 20 MINUTES!
The next day I counted the straws I was collecting as I went and found that I got 10, (10 too many), but 10 none the less. NOT 32!
OK - Why am I so despondent about finding straws on the beach. For one, they don't belong there which is obvious, but for two they were everywhere! Day of the straw had struck this unsuspecting Santa Monica beach.
Seriously though, I find it increasingly hard to see single use plastic items that are made from material, (plastic), that is meant to last forever, (plastic only photodegrades - meaning breaking into smaller particles but never goes away) and we use it for only minutes.
Doesn't this seem a bit crazy to you? Well my friends Anna Cummins and Marcus Eriksen have one solution to these straws. They will build a boat out of woven straws and sail it across the English Chanel and down the Siene River in France to raise awareness about Plastic Marine Pollution that is plaguing our oceans.

Hard to believe? Read more here at their 5 Gyres site. Oh yeah, they are already sailing across the North Atlantic Gyre trolling for plastic and appearing in Good Morning America via Skype. See that here. Keep up the good work!!
And of course there is the Plastic Pollution Coalition's stance on straws.
"Straws are for suckers!" - I love that.
I say all of this not to make you feel guilty if you like a good straw at the movies like the rest of us. But hey, why not buy a stainless steel reusable straw? Or just skip it.
Our power, and a large part of the needed solution to this problem of Plastic Marine Pollution lies in the daily choices we make as a consumer. One person refusing a straw may not be enough. But what if your actions caught on? What if everyone started to rethink their plastic convenience items, or stopped using them altogether? The results, one person at a time, adds up to huge amounts of change.

And next year at the NBA All Stars game at the Staples Center, lets get our Los Angeles Lakers to come do a beach cleanup and environmental education about Plastic Marine Pollution. Any NBA players out there that want to help me take the lead on this? :)