You've probably heard a lot about the problems that plastic consumption is causing on our planet and wildlife.. but what are you doing to avoid this huge negative impact? This is not a single problem, it is universal. It is everywhere and it affects the whole earth - from the smallest living creature to the largest ocean - so we want to raise awareness for this matter.
The population on earth is growing, and sustainability is becoming harder and harder, not only to preserve our natural resources but also to have a positive impact on the environment. Today's lifestyle embraces easily disposable products, in which most are made of plastic, which happens to be composed of major toxic pollutants. These pollutants cause negative impacts on the natural environment and create problems for plants, wildlife and the human population. In addition to not being biodegradable, their toxic compounds are known to affect public health and well-being and cause numerous illnesses.
How many times have you seen a seagull eating a piece of plastic on the beach? How many times have you noticed a huge plastic tank being carried by the ocean? How many times have you used plastic material and discarded it incorrectly? How often do you go shopping and 90% of the things you bring are stored in plastic containers, not to mention the number of bottles of water you consume?
So, let's put it into numbers: every year the amount of plastic waste produced exceeds 250 million metric tons, and it that, at least 8 million go to the ocean!
Considering that the disposal of plastic in the water affects marine life, the burning of plastic releases toxic substances into the air and soil fertility is affected by plastic waste, how much time do we have left?
Your choices can have a big influence on plastic pollution. By changing our habits, we change the world around us. It is as easy as taking these five simple steps:
SHOP PLASTIC FREE
We were so sad when we were at the supermarket in Florence and saw bananas sealed individually in plastic bags - what is the point? Whenever you go shopping, notice the number of products that come in plastic containers. Insane! isn’t it? The best way to reduce plastic consumption is to avoid buying products in plastic wrapping. We know that it's hard but try your best. Always choose to buy fresh products, so you don’t need to put every single fruit or vegetable in those tiny plastic bags that supermarkets have, instead carry your own reusable bag. You can also search for local stores and markets, usually, everything is fresh, and they don’t use that many plastics.
SKIP THE STRAW
Plastic straws are the worst piece of plastic ever made - it only takes a few minutes to make a straw, but it lasts a lifetime on Earth! Every year, at least 500 million straws are used, and they represent one of the most found items in the oceans, around 611 thousand straws. The best option is to skip the straw when you order a drink, so make sure you tell the waiter that you don’t need that piece of plastic. If you love to drink with a straw, buy one made from sustainable materials like bamboo, and take it with you all the time.
TAKE IT SLOW
In a word where everything goes fast, you must know how to take it slow. Stop eating on the go, take time to appreciate a good meal at a restaurant or simply use your own lunch box. You will not only save the planet but make a healthy choice for your body. We carry our lunch boxes everywhere while travelling and it’s the more comfortable, sustainable, clean and cheap option!
REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE
Stop buying bottled water. Over 70 billion single-use plastic bottles are consumed in the US and Europe, and unless they are incinerated (which releases toxic gases into the atmosphere) it take up to 500 years to decompose one single bottle. So your only valid option is to carry your own reusable bottle, made of glass, stainless steel or other sustainable option. You will save up a lot of money, make a huge contribution in saving marine life and water will taste better than ever!
One thing that annoys us most and makes us really sad is to see garbage thrown out on the beach. Nowadays most of the beach sites have garbage cans available, so there is no excuse to leave your trash in the sand. If you have never noticed, all this garbage, where 90% is made of plastic, ends up in the ocean and in the body of many animals, killing them. We have the power in our hands to make a difference! Each time you go to the beach, not only put your rubbish where it belongs but try to clean the rubbish you see, as much as possible. A 3-minute cleaning should do and if everyone does the same, we are creating a massive positive chain reaction towards saving marine life and our beautiful planet earth -including ourselves.
We all have the responsibility to keep the planet healthy and clean. We are in charge of our own future, and that begins right now!
☀ with Love and Sunshine Patricia & Miguel