Please Recylce

| April 22, 2018
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Earth Day turned 48 on Sunday, April 22. Senator Gaylord Nelson (D-WI) founded Earth Day in 1970.

His hope was to make the environment a political issue in an era when US rivers caught on fire and thick smog choked cities.

One of the bleakest stories of the year so far was the report of a 6-ton sperm whale washing up on the shores of southern Spain with 64 pounds of plastic in its stomach, a grotesque sign of the alarming rate at which we’re dumping plastics into the ocean.

According to a Vox article:

The plastic crisis is a truly global one, and the numbers are staggering:

A 2015 study found that between 4.8 and 12.7 million metric tons of plastic makes it into the ocean from land each year.

By 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by weight.

Since plastic is synthetic, there are few natural processes that break it down, allowing bags, straws, and packaging to linger for decades if not centuries. And we’re not very good at containing it to landfills. About 32 percent of plastics make it out into nature, where it often ends up in the bellies of fish, birds, and whales — and, as it turns out, potentially in our stomachs too.

In one investigation, the nonprofit Orb Media found plastic fibers in 83 percent of drinking water samples all over the world, with some of the highest levels in drinking fountains at the US Capitol. In a separate investigation published this year, it found microplastic particles in 93 percent of the bottled water samples it tested (250 bottles from 11 leading brands including Dasani and Aquafina).

These kinds of findings have prompted environmental activists pushing to reduce or end the use of disposable plastics. Curbing plastic pollution is a key theme in this year’s Earth Day, and there’s a high-profile campaign underway to ban plastic straws in particular.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May called this week to ban plastic straws, swabs, and stirrers. Some researchers last year openly called for an international agreement to control plastic pollution. And there was one bit of hopeful news for potentially more effective disposal in the future: Scientists have discovered an enzyme that can digest plastic.

 

Stay Tuned, Disciplined & Patient! {TJM}

The Investor & Character Equation (ICE) | S + R = O

 

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