September 23, 2020

Why plastic is like "Where's Waldo"

By Paige Sillcox
Why plastic is like "Where's Waldo"

Have you ever played "Where's Waldo"? You know, the books with brightly coloured scenes and you have to find the character "Waldo" hidden among the blue, black, red and white images. As soon as you see Waldo, you can't "un-see" him. The same is true with plastic. Once you see it, you see it everywhere.


The following are some facts about plastic, once you know them, you can't "un-know" them.

Plastic is made from cellulose, coal, natural gas, salt and crude oil, the major component is crude oil.

As the demand for gasoline fuel decreases, oil companies expect to fill that void with the production of plastic.

Only one-third of plastic that can be recycled is recycled.

Rigid Plastic can only be recycled once.

Flexible plastic (plastic wrap, sandwich bags, produce & grocery bags) goes directly to landfill or ends up in our oceans.

17.6 billion pounds of plastic enter our oceans every year.

Plastic in the ocean breaks down from sun exposure and waves movement, which releases chemicals into the water and micro-plastics into the food chain.

Plastic never biodegrades: all plastic that has ever been made still exists in some form.


With a cup half-full approach, here are some things we can do:

Reuse plastic containers that you do have; take your plastic shampoo, conditioner and other personal and home care products to your local refill shop.

Replace single use produce, grocery and sandwich bags with reusable ones.

Replace single use plastic wrap with reusable fabric bowl covers, beeswax wrap and silicone covers.

Replace plastic household tools, such as, scrub brushes, sponges, loofahs, tooth brushes with biodegradable, compostable ones.

Read labels. Learn about the companies you support. Businesses can do better, it's up to us to be sure they do.

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