In 2014, 33 million tons of plastic waste was generated in the US and only 9% was recovered for recycling. Most plastic waste ends up in landfills, but a large amount is discharged through stormwater runoff into oceans, where it accumulates and causes physical harm to aquatic life such as birds, fish and, marine mammals.
While animals can get entangled in larger plastic items, approximately 90% of the plastics in marine environments deteriorate to small particles of less than five millimeters in size, called microplastics. These tiny plastic beads are very difficult to remove and are ingested by wildlife; some of which are a human food source.
What You Can Do:
- Buy items with less packaging
- Bring reusable bags to stores
- Use reusable containers instead of plastic bags
- Use reusable water bottles and coffee cups
- Don't buy cleaning or health/beauty products with microbeads
- REDUCE, REUSE and RECYCLE!