Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Day 20 - baggie blues

I am not blue at all about the order I just placed for reuseit snack baggies and lunch baggies.  Great idea sent to me by my dear friend Nikki.  Thank you! 

BUT, the blues do hit when you learn what all those little sandwich bags lead to.  I learned today the following facts at
  • The U.S. goes through 100 billion plastic shopping bags annually at an estimated cost to retailers of $4 billion. (The Wall Street Journal)
  • The extremely slow decomposition rate of plastic bags leaves them to drift on the ocean for untold years. According to Algalita Marine Research Foundation, these plastic bags cause the death of many marine animals (fish, sea turtles, etc.), every year when animals mistake them for food.
  • Numbers were kept on 43 different types of refuse. Cigarette butts were the most common. Plastic bags came in second. (Ocean Conservency, 2008)
  • When plastics break down, they don't biodegrade; they photodegrade. This means the materials break down to smaller fragments which readily soak up toxins. They then contaminate soil, waterways, and animals upon digestion.
  • Windblown plastic bags are so prevalent in Africa that a cottage industry has sprung up to harvest them. These are then woven and sold as hats and (more durable) bags.
 Ouch, huh?  Once again it comes down to convenience and awareness.  I totally loved checking out this website as there are a ton of facts and they have a whole section of DIY ideas that are earth friendly.  I am definitely going to spend more time on this site and I can't wait to get my adorable kid friendly snack bags in a few days.  I got the ones with guitars on them for the kiddo and a cute lunch bag for myself.  Now to make the transition to reusable baggies for more than just grocery shopping. 

Anyone else going to go bagless? 

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