Plastic is incredibly convenient, it’s versatile, and it is very easy to throw away. Now it might seem like we just listed all the positive attributes of plastic, they are also the primary reasons why this material is so extremely dangerous. Most people encounter disposable plastics on a daily basis and pay very little attention to what happens to these items once they are done with them. After all, why would we, once that bottle, bag, or straw is in the trash it just disappears! Well … sadly, the place where those items disappear to is often landfills – which ultimately means the ocean. Every year a total of 8.8 million tons of plastic waste are dumped into the world’s oceans, and plastic, being the ever-durable material, can take hundreds of years to break down – which really means break into smaller and smaller pieces but never really go away.
Considering around 300 million tons of plastic are produced every single year, this volume of plastic pollution isn’t going away any time soon. That is, unless we all make a very distinct change in our habits.
To help encourage this change, the organization Recycled Mississippi is taking to the Mississippi River, on a boat made out of trash no less, to document the enormous amount of plastic pollution in our waterways.
This awesome group is composed of six friends who are looking to produce a crowdfunded 40-minute documentary that will unearth why the Mississippi River is one of the most polluted in the world, and tell the story of how local communities have been affected by this pollution, in addition to chronicling efforts to clean up and restore the body of water.
The group is led by Dan Cullum who has spent the past three years leading “recycled expeditions,” across various bodies of water on kayaks made entirely of recycled plastic bottles. The ship the team is traveling on down the Mississippi is composed of all recycled materials – plastic and reclaimed wood. While the journey down one of the world’s longest and most iconic rivers certainly won’t be easy, we can’t help but be inspired by these individuals. We need to wake up and recognize the impact of our plastic before it is too late. Scientists have already predicted that the world’s oceans will contain more plastic than fish by 2050 if we do not make a change in our habits.
The solution to our plastic problem is simple and it starts with easy, daily actions. If we all make an effort to identify where we use plastic and actively look for alternatives, we can drastically cut down on the amount of plastic pollution that finds its way into the oceans.
As the leading organization at the forefront of the conscious consumerism movement, One Green Planet believes that reducing everyday plastics from our lives is not about giving up anything or sacrificing convenience, but rather learning to reap the maximum benefit from the items you use every day while having the minimum impact.
To keep up to date with Recycled Mississippi’s progress, follow their Facebook page, here. To learn more about how you can cut plastic out of our your life, join One Green Planet’s #CrushPlastic campaign.
Let’s #CrushPlastic! Click the graphic below for more information.
All image source: Recycled Mississippi/Facebook