2. Nix plastic straws
Supply reusable or biodegradable straws for your guests.
Single-use plastics are a major ocean pollutant. The journal Science found that we humans generated 275 million metric tons of plastic waste in one year, of which 4.8 million to 12.7 million metric tons gets into the oceans, mostly washing into the sea from land and rivers. Plastic doesn’t biodegrade. It merely breaks down into microplastics which can be carcinogenic and also attract pollutants. They get consumed by wildlife, posing threats of toxicity and starvation. Fishing nets and soda rings can strangle, straws can impale. And the plastics work their way up the food chain and onto our plates.
Single-use plastics like bags and straws really became popular in the 1960s and ‘70s for their cheapness and convenience. But if usage trends continue, there may be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050. Nixing straws won’t solve the problem. But it’s a gateway conversation and a starting point in the restructuring of our plastics usage.