At left: advertisement by Greenpeace Canada.
In the summer of 2017, I watched a video from Buzzfeed that had recently gone viral. The video was of a sea turtle that had mistakenly eaten a straw, and it had to be pulled out of its nose. I was traumatized. I couldn’t even watch the video because it was so hard for me to watch, especially because plastic straws are human-made trash. In the years and years of scientists telling the public that the ocean was terribly polluted, I didn’t believe them because I didn’t have the video proof. After this, I knew that something needed to be done. I realized that I couldn’t make a worldwide change, so I did the next best thing: I gave up plastic straws.
At first, drinking without a straw was hard because I had to drink directly from the cup. I would always get this annoying water mustache. Luckily, it is just as easy to get an alternative straw, and it is very convenient to carry a metal straw with me. I just ordered one off of Amazon and a cardboard box with the straw bundled up inside showed up at my door a few days later. One of the beauties of online shopping is that it allows us to get new innovative products shipped directly to us. These companies create new jobs, stimulate the economy, and give consumers new products that are not only useful but helpful to the environment.
This situation is a win for everyone involved, especially the environment. Even if you lose a metal straw or just want one for every day of the week, you can have another one shipped to your house. The solution is so simple and easy. If you can get a metal straw, why even use a plastic one? I just carry my metal straw in my purse, and at lunch, I say “no thank you” when offered a plastic straw. After saying that, a big smile always crawls across my face because it feels so good to be saving the turtles.
Whenever I see someone using a plastic straw I am disgusted. People who use plastic straws are basically shoving them up the turtles’ noses themselves. As a society, we need to shame those who still use plastic straws because their use of plastic straws shows how much they don’t care about the future of our planet. The only solution to eliminating all plastic straws is to give those people a taste of their own medicine. My metal straw is going directly up the nose of whatever heartless creature decides to use a plastic straw next.
If those plastic straws don’t end up killing more turtles, they end up in the Pacific Ocean killing the turtles’ food. The Pacific Ocean was one of the most polluted oceans in the world and by taking big steps such as eliminating plastic straws as a society, the ocean is now significantly cleaner. There is not much else that needs to be done to reduce pollution in the Pacific Ocean because no one uses plastic straws anymore. This is the way to save the environment: everyone making little changes
It is so easy to make small changes like switching to metal straws, recycling at your house, or buying clothes second- hand, all of which end up making much bigger worldly impacts. Many people say it’s the big companies that need to change, but in reality, they are helping the situation by providing the solutions in the form of products. Some more examples of easy products to get shipped to your house are bamboo toothbrushes, mini compost bins, reusable plastic storage bags, and even reusable silicone baking cups. Big companies make saving the environment easy for everyday people to make environmentally conscious decisions. People should thank big companies, especially those that are making metal straws. After all, the turtles are saved because of your purchase.