George’s one thing: less plastic

I’m doing many things to reduce my carbon footprint:

  • Walking or biking instead of driving or taking public transit
  • Taking public transit instead of driving
  • Driving a plug-in hybrid
  • Eating less beef and chicken
  • Eating sustainable seafood

But the one thing I wasn’t doing was using less plastic. And, despite the romanticism of that famous quote from “The Graduate,” humanity’s embrace of plastic is wreaking havoc on the environment.

Why reducing and eliminating plastic is good for the environment

Too much of anything rarely is good for you, and this is especially true of plastic.

Many plastics do not wear down. And since only 7 percent of plastic gets recycled, much of it ends up in the ocean, where it endangers marine life — as many as 700 species.

Aside from the larger floating pieces that have been found in the stomachs of birds and sea turtles, the plastic that breaks down into microplastics has been found in the food web. You may have eaten some microplastic today!

Or perhaps plastic rained down on you.

Plastics travel long distances and some plastics decompose — in average 100 to 500 years.

Plastic pollution by the numbers

There are millions of reasons to reduce and eliminate the use of plastics, among them:

It’s okay to use more plastic

What? No! That’s a fake subhead. Did you not read anything higher on this page?


For fecks sake, plastic has entered the food chain and discovered in tap water worldwide! Are you okay with that?

Remember, plastic doesn’t decompose like other stuff, and tons of plastic ends up in the ocean every day. The sun may break it down into smaller pieces, but it’s all still out there, slowly finding its way back to you.

Do something — anything — to reduce plastic pollution

Plastics starts and ends with the choices we make. #StartWith1Thing

We’re still in a plastic-centric world, seemingly impossible to escape. But at the end of the day, the choices we make are what matter most, and if we choose to live in a world free of plastic, a world devoted to clean energy, a world devoted to sustainability, our quality of life has nowhere to go but up.

Join me in eliminating as much plastic from your daily life as possible, and be sure to recycle the plastic you can’t avoid using:

And Heather Thomas (not related) recommended the following guides:

The Girl Scout Troop Daisy Scouts discovered this page while pursuing their Eco Learner badges and recommend this fine resource:

Middle school student MaryAnne recommends the following resource with info about marine life in Florida: