The perils of plastic, much like the material itself, are everywhere right now. Statistics from Surfers Against Sewage state that plastic pollution can now be found on every beach in the world, with microplastics even found embedded deep into Arctic ice. With the rate we use plastic increasing along with the population, approximately 8 million pieces of plastic pollution find their way into our oceans every day and over 150 plastic bottles can be found on each mile of UK beaches alone.
Not only is plastic spoiling our beautiful landscape, it is also killing our marine wildlife. Recent studies of deceased marine wildlife have revealed marine plastic pollution in 100% of sea turtles, 59% of whales, 36% of seals and 40% of seabirds that were examined, with 100,000 marine mammals and turtles and 1 million seabirds being killed annually by some form of plastic pollution.
It’s not only marine life ingesting plastic, we are too. According to statistics found by Ocean Crusaders, two thirds of the world’s fish stock are suffering from plastic ingestion as an effect of the sheer volume of plastic in the ocean. Over 100 species of aquatic life have been found with some form of microplastic in their system and with more than half of those being seafood we eat, what does this mean for us?
In an attempt to reduce my single use plastic usage, I contacted The Friendly Panda, who very kindly sent me a handy pocket pack of their bamboo straws! Once purely the preferred snack of the panda, this amazing plant has so many talents in the sustainability stakes and can be not only found as straws, but tupperware, coffee cups and even clothing! Family run, The Friendly Panda don’t just sell straws either, you can also find toothbrushes and cutlery on their website.
The cotton pocket pack bag contains two straws, which Diane personalised for me and a husk cleaning brush. Perfect for throwing in your bag for when iced coffee urges take over on these hot summer days or for a post practise smoothie!
As a planet, we’ve definitely got a long way to go to reduce our plastic consumption, but I believe by making small changes such as these, we can begin to reduce the damage caused and look towards a more sustainable future.