Posts Tagged ‘pollution’

How Does Plastic in Our Waters Affect Marine Life?

Artists for A Pristine Planet

You’ll definitely want to read these important excerpts from articles. (Sources at bottom of this post.)

How Plastic Debris Affects Marine Life

According to the WWF, 100,000 marine mammals are killed by plastic rubbish each year around the world. Sea animals can become entangled in the plastic debris which can cause strangulation or growth deformations.  Floating plastics can be mistaken for food, causing blockages within the animal’s digestive systems leading to eventual death.

The IOSEA report that the lifespan of the average plastic bag may be between 200 to 400 years, well outlasting the affected animal, while a plastic bottle is thought to take 450 years to fully break down.

What Happened to this Whale?

In August 2000 an autopsy on a dead Bryde’s whale near Cairns, Australia, revealed that its stomach was tightly packed with not food but six square metres [that’s almost 200 square feet – ed.] of plastic rubbish, including supermarket bags, food packages, and fragments of rubbish bags.

The Knock-On Effect To Humans

Not only are discarded plastics believed to have a devastating effect on sea-life, but the impact on animals then has repercussions for the health of human beings.

Toxins ingested by sea animals end up on dinner plates and humans invariably absorb the carcinogens contained in plastics when they consume seafood.

Scientists have proven that the Endocrine Disrupter Chemicals (EDCs) which are added to plastics to make them softer and easier to handle affect fat cells, contributing to obesity.

Scientists also believe that exposure to plastics affects

Why Not Drink Bottled Water?

What can you do to help with the plastic water bottle mess??

Here’s one simple alternative to bottled water: buy a stainless steel thermos, and use it. Over and over and over. I save myself over $2000 dollars a year by choosing to do that. I also buy drinks in glass bottles that I like and want to reuse – sometimes just throwing the drink out!
Don’t like the way your local tap water tastes? Inexpensive carbon filters will turn most tap water sparkling fresh at a fraction of bottled water’s cost.
Consider taking Food and Water Watch’s No Bottled Water Pledge. Conserve water wherever possible, and stay on top of local water issues.
Want to know more? Start with the Sierra Club’s fact sheet on bottled water.

You Can Help

Today I was looking again at the figures about how many water bottles we throw away every day. Millions upon millions.

How about this one: Americans use 2,500,000 plastic bottles every hour!

And here’s another one: Recycling plastic saves twice as much energy as burning it in an incinerator.

Check out more stats at You’ll be amazed and inspired.

What would happen if we sat down and dreamed up uses for all that plastic?

The other day I was in the art supply store and saw a rack where ball-point pens were being displayed with a water bottle. I’m thinking, “Hm, what’s that bottle doing there?”

I looked closer, and they were pens made out of plastic water bottles! Yeeha! And they were refillable, too! Way to go! Here’s another company who makes all kinds of recycled pens – from paper as well:

And what if we bought reusable water bottles? Here’s a bunch of them, and I believe the least expensive was about 6 or 7 bucks.

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