Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Declare Independence from Plastic Straws and Swizzle Sticks

Elpasonaturally published a post about the Be Straw Free program about three years ago. Since then ten-year-old Milo Cress, the founder, has become a teenager. A little over a week ago the Washington Post did a story about Cress and the drive to go strawless: A campaign to eliminate plastic straws is sucking in thousands of converts by staff reporter Darryl Fears. 

Please take a few minutes to read the article.

As Fears points out, one of the big reasons why more people think straws suck is a video that went viral of a straw stuck in a sea turtle's nose. You can watch the long version or the short version. It will gross you out and will make you think twice about using plastic straws in restaurants, bars - well - everywhere. 

"OK" you might say. "El Paso not only has no sea turtles, it doesn't have a sea." But we do have wind and straws get picked up and dumped in the river or even fly faraway to the ocean. The main point is that they are wasteful. It's just plastic that we can really do without.

It's not just straws. It's also swizzle sticks. Jiggle your drink. The tinkling of ice is pleasant to hear. Use your finger. If your finger is so dirty, what are you doing in a public place anyway? Besides, the alcohol will kill whatever germs may be hiding in your pores. If you really are fastidious to a fault, use flatware.

I do request no straws or swizzle sticks. More often than not, force of habit takes over and the wait staff brings them sprouting from a drink anyway. I yank them out, wave them, and say: "These are wasteful. Just more plastic polluting our earth."

Landfills are growing and growing. Don't believe it, take time to visit the euphemistically named, Camino Real Environmental Center in Sunland Park. Many Atlantic seaboard states don't have room for landfills. They are shipping billions of tons to landfills in Kentucky and the Midwest. It's big revenue for those states. It's also a great way to increase the carbon footprint. Why worry though; there is no such thing as global warming you know. 

Click through these pictures and find out where the largest trash dump in the world is located.

Take action. Don't use straws and talk to the management of your favorite restaurants about it. If your business or organization uses them, ask them to stop. Recruit others.

Let's declare independence from plastic straws and swizzle sticks.

1 comment:

  1. And the plastic bag...the real "El Paso flower." Shoppers can take their own totes..eventually the plastic bag should be banned. If South Africa can do it, why not here?