Tips, tricks, and great information on recycling and going green!
PLASTIC STRAWS SUCK
The issue of plastic straws is near and dear to my heart. At the California Democratic Conference in June 2019, I was fortunate to pass a Resolution for the further reduction of single use plastic straws in California.
It’s controversial, even among the liberal minded. Some argue that any focus on this issue just doesn’t go far enough. And I grant that it’s a baby step. But I’m a believer that even is little progress is progress nonetheless. I also argue that this issue isn’t as menial as some many believe. Not only are more than 500,000 plastic straws used in the U.S. every year, but the majority of those straws do not get recycled. Because, while straws are theoretically recyclable, because of their shape and size, they fall through the recycling machinery – only to end up in a landfill. Any straws that make their way to the top of the heap are easily carried away by the wind. These straws eventually join the many thousands of other straws that took a more direct route into a water source – where they will break down into smaller and smaller pieces, eventually devolving into microplastics. These pieces are consumed by water birds and marine life, leading to the death of millions each year.
Unless you have a medical or special need, plastic straws are not just an unnecessary convenience item, they are potentially a deadly unnecessary convenience item.
But you don’t have to enjoy that milkshake or your favorite beverage of choice with out a straw! There are great alternative options. Check out this link to explore the possibilities.
We can make a difference!
Lora De La Portilla, Club President
Know the Numbers:
- #1 – PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) …
- #2 – HDPE (High-Density Polyethylene) …
- #3 – PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) …
- #4 – LDPE (Low-Density Polyethylene) …
- #5 – PP (Polypropylene) …
- #6 – PS (Polystyrene) …
- #7 – Other (BPA, Polycarbonate and LEXAN)
More information on the types of plastics: https://www.plasticsoupfoundation.org/en/files/types-of-plastic/?gclid=CjwKCAjwibzsBRAMEiwA1pHZrseln9CuQw-yRRdSqkeEThEeA3pn3dP5HdCebv6DRqra4ec8gz6KPRoCX24QAvD_BwE#recyclingcode.
Did you know that plastic water bottles and their caps are NOT made of the same plastic? The bottle caps are made of #5 plastic – one of the safest plastics, but also one of the least recycled. Fortunately, the Gimme 5 program is filling this gap.
From their site at https://www.preserve.eco/pages/gimme5-overview:
Many municipal recycling systems do not collect #5 as widely as #1 and #2. Through the Gimme 5 program, we not only raise awareness and accessibility, but we also cut resource usage by about half, compared to newly-produced (virgin) #5 plastic. We sort, wash, melt, pelletize, and test, allowing us to turn the once used plastic into raw materials to create beautiful, new “Preserve” products.
The Gimme 5 recycling takeback program, enables individuals, companies, and institutions to collect and recycle #5 polypropylene plastic. Through our partnership with Whole Foods Market, we are able to use their stores as drop-off locations, and utilize its existing recycling infrastructure to reclaim the #5 plastic. Once our recycling centers receive the materials, we are able to create new Preserve products that are 100% collected and manufactured right here in the US.
At the time of this post, the Glendale Whole Foods does not participate in the Gimme 5 program. But you can check for another location at the following link, or let the Glendale store know that they need to start participating in this program!!
But don’t let Whole Foods stand in your way of participating. You can mail your bottle caps and other #5 plastics to ensure they are recycled!