Recycling doesn’t suck: People should do more for the environment than trade metal for plastic

Getting a metal straw instead of a plastic one for an iced coffee from Starbucks isn’t going to help much in the fight for a cleaner Earth or the decrease in global warming. Everything is plastic credit cards, straws, shoes, even phones. Everything factory-made has an aspect of plastic included in the product, whether it’s a grain of plastic or is completely made of plastic. While recycling and using metal straws is a good first step, so much more needs to be done. We only have 18 months left before the damage we have done is irreversible. 

Although recycling and reusing do have an impact on the amount of trash that is dumped in the ocean or burned into a toxic gas that affects the atmosphere, it is a small impact. The plastic problem ranges from the type of plastic, to the color of the plastic, to even the amount being produced and used. Not all plastic can be recycled, especially colored plastic, and taking it to the recycling centers doesn’t always guarantee correct disposal. 

Red, green, and blue plastics are more difficult to recycle and reuse because of the color dyes used in the plastic. Plastic such as water bottles and straws are easier to recycle because they are clear and can be reused. The straws in the ocean killing coral reefs and marine life are caused from a lack of recycling. 

The lack of recycling centers stems from lack of interest and lack of knowledge. Cities don’t want to spend money on compactors or recycling trucks, and the price to have a recycling truck is more expensive than the possible impact. Homeowners don’t want to pay extra money or spend their time taking cans, paper, and plastic to a center if it’s not mandatory and no one else is doing it. This is not a case of “recycling is uncool,” but more along the lines of one person recycling doesn’t make as much of an impact as an entire neighborhood recycling 

People act like avoiding plastic straws makes them a saint, but most people don’t do much more. Every little bit helps, but people must do more to save the world from impending doom.

Another easy way to save the earth is to compost.Taking advantage of compostable garbage is another step in the right direction. 

Consumers should also encourage business to use reusable packaging. Most home products come in plastic containers, and many business products have started developing ways to make them refillable. Laundry detergent, shampoo, conditioner, and even refillable plastic bags. 

People should stop being lazy. Instead of using ziplock baggies for food they should use food storage containers and reuse them each day. Most people have to take their lunch bag home anyway, so why not take home the food storage containers as well?  It’s a simple fix that could be implemented in everyone’s life that could help. 

Although metal straws are a good first step for the impending doom of the earth and its atmosphere, but it is a very small step. More action can be taken in more efficient time. Thank you for listening to my Ted Talk.