According to our friends at Earth Day Network, over 300 million tonnes of plastic are produced each year for bags, bottles and nearly every other consumer commodity you can conceive.
Plastic is a human obsession, and for good reason: plastic is cheap to produce, light to carry and it lasts plastically forever. And that, of course, is the problem. No matter how much we re-use and recycle, it stays with us for decades or centuries, and millions of new plastic tonnes pour into the environment every year.
The particular trouble with plastic bags, wrap, straws, coffee cup lids and bottles is that they are designed to be used once then thrown “away” – that is, taken somewhere by someone where we can stop seeing, thinking and worrying about them.
Like the ocean – which the UN estimates contains 46,000 pieces of plastic waste for every square mile. There were at least three reports in 2013 of whales dying on beaches in Europe and America with their guts full of plastic. Millions of birds and smaller mammals die annually from swallowing plastic, in fact 94% of all birds in the North Sea contain plastic in their stomachs.
So there are millions of reasons reasons to embark on a no more plastic crusade, starting with the month of July!
The challenge is quite simple…refuse to use single-use plastic during July.