Plastic-Free July 2021
It’s Plastic-Free July again! This month is to bring awareness to the global environmental threat of plastic pollution.
According to the Recycling Council of Ontario, Canada only recycles 9% of plastics! Which means a whopping 91% of plastics that you thought could be recycled went into the landfill, incinerated, or floating around in the ocean. Burning plastic releases toxic gases like dioxins, furans, mercury, BCPs that threaten vegetation, human and animal health. Black carbon (soot) is also released which contributes to more greenhouse gases, global warming, and air pollution. (Source: @unep)
Plastic bags in the ocean entangle marine animals which limits their mobility and can cause them to starve and die. Hard plastics (remember 91% of them aren’t recycled) do not biodegrade. Instead, they break down into micro-plastics particles that end up in the bodies of wildlife. Through the domino effect, micro-plastics enter our food chain. (Source: @oceana_canada) Upon analyzing a study done by University of Newcastle, Australia, it suggests that people are consuming a credit card’s worth of plastic every week. That’s roughly 2000 tiny pieces or 5 grams of plastic every week, 21 grams a month, and just over 250 grams a year. (Source: @wwf)
This post is not to judge people who still have plastic in their lives. We know plastic is pretty great! It is versatile, lightweight, waterproof, flexible, and incredibly useful in its lifetime of serving you. The problem is when the purpose of plastic ends, the plastic itself does not end— it still exists. So let’s make it count! Single-use plastics just serve you for a minute and stay on Earth for centuries. For Plastic-Free July, take a look around and take note of the single-use plastics you invite into your home. Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!
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