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Plastic straws are single-use throwaway items, think (plastic water bottles, to-go food containers, plastic cutlery, and plastic-lined coffee cups).
It means you use these items for around 4-6 minutes and then discard it. This creates a huge problem because straws don’t biodegrade into soil again, they eventually turn into microplastics which enters the food chain.
One study published earlier this year, estimated as many as 8.3 billion plastic straws pollute the world’s beaches.
In the U.S. alone it is estimated that we use 500 million straws every day.
Most of us have seen the footage of the turtle that had a straw stuck in its nose. What a devastating little clip. If you haven’t seen it here you go!
This video was taken by biologist Christine Figgener and it took two years for people to take action and start banning straws.
Three years later straws are being banned in major cities like San Francisco, Seattle and even the so heavily polluting Starbucks has promised to stop using plastic straws and opt-in for better lids.
Starbucks plans to phase out plastic straws by 2020. McDonald’s recently announced it will ban plastic straws at its U.K. and Ireland restaurants. Bon Appétit Management, a food service company with 1,000 U.S. locations, announced last May it will phase out plastic straws. Alaska Airlines will be one of the first airlines to phase out plastic straws and stirrers, in part thanks to an environmentally conscious girl scout. ~ national geographic
The next step on your journey to zero waste is to say “No to Straws”.
Perhaps easier for the adult to adapt than for our children. But if you really must use straws, there are great alternatives to these little plastic suckers.
Luckily there are more companies out there that actually do have morals and the right ethics to make a product with a small to a zero impact on the planet.
Take a look at HAY straws, they are what they sound like HAY. Natures straws. All the company does is wash and sterilize them and you are ready to suck on those, cool right.
How about bamboo straws? I love them, there is another example of mother nature making it easier for us humans to drink out of a glass.
Then we have paper straws, although they can get pretty soft pretty quick and personally I don’t like the way they feel on my lips.
You can get silicon straws, but I’d rather not. Even though the FDA approves silicon as food safe. I think if it is not natural in most cases it is not the safest of all products.
Then there is the stainless steel straw, personally I like them best because you can’t really break them.
Glass straws are also a nice alternative but not so good when you are traveling around because they can break.
So there are a lot of straws out there as you can see you have plenty of alternatives to the standard plastic straw. I say go ahead and add one to your survival kit.
Best places to buy your straws are:
Snap a pick of you drinking your favourite beverage with a sustainable straw and the #zerowasteman