The problem with plastic bags is that trillions are produced each year and a majority of these bags are simply tossed out to plague our landfills, forests, and natural water systems.
By the time you finish reading this sentence, around 800,000 plastic bags will have been consumed.
Environmentalists estimate that more than 300 million plastic bags end up in the Atlantic Ocean alone. These discarded bags are left to pollute our water, harm and kill ocean life and other wild animals, and put human health at risk for centuries to come.
In an age where there are so many sustainable alternatives to plastic bags, there’s no reason to continue to consume them, and we’re about to tell you why. Here are 4 reasons to ditch plastic bags (forever!) and save the earth while doing so.
1. Plastic Bags Never Fully Break Down
The plastic bags you bring your groceries home in today will be on this earth long after your great-great-great-grandchildren are born (and then some!).
It’s estimated that a plastic bag gets 12 minutes of use before it’s thrown away. Were those 12 minutes of short-lived convenience worth the thousands of years that the bag will be in a landfill or ocean?
Looking for an alternative? Check out this organic tote bag that’s high quality and will last you for years and years. Imagine how many plastic bags you’ll be saving!
2. Plastic Bags Are Killing Our Oceans
It’s predicted that, by 2050, there will be more plastic in our oceans than fish. This should be extremely troubling to you.
Sea creatures like turtles, dolphins, and seals often mistake floating plastic bags for a meal. They ingest it and then die when their stomachs fail to digest the plastic and they’re left to starve. Seabirds and other marine animals also can be choked by plastic bags when they get entangled in them. Don’t use plastic bags, save our oceans!
3. Plastic Bags Are Putting Human Health at Risk
The chemicals that are used to produce plastic are potentially toxic to humans. A plastic bag we use once and then throw away could find it’s way back into your stomach through water or food you consume.
This is because seafood can contain tiny pieces of plastic in it (from when the animal consumed plastic in the ocean) and because plastic can break into microscopic fragments that enter our water systems.
4. Plastic Bags Are Hard to Recycle
The cost, time, and equipment that it takes to recycle plastic bags makes the process difficult. Most recycling programs don’t accept plastic bags because, more often than not, even recycled plastic bags end up in landfills or other areas.
You can take your plastic bags to a grocery that accepts pre-used bags if you don’t know what to do with your stash.
Say Goodbye to Plastic Bags
In a world where there are consequences for your actions, your choices matter. Start by bringing your own reusable tote to the grocery store, or saying no to a bag when shopping in a store.
Whatever you do, it’s time to ditch plastic bags for good. Don’t be a part of the problem.
Did you learn something new in this article? If you, make sure to read our other posts about all things sustainability.