The Last Straw

By PSU EcoMerge Capstone - 11:53 PM


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The next time you reach for a straw to indulge in your midnight mint mocha, you should do Mother Nature a favor and say “No”. As harmful as a straw may appear, the amount of danger it bestows on our wildlife is tremendous. Americans use about 500 million straws every day and these straws make it to the top 10 debris found at beaches. Among the sun kissed beaches, all debris is caused by humans! The straws that we use daily attract hungry and curious marine life. Despite being a frail, thin and harmful appearance, plastic wastes contribute to the death of about 100,000 animals.

This viral video surfaced varying social platforms and it is a strong reminder to how much danger a plastic straw can do to an innocent reptile. The turtle was rescued off the coast of Costa Rica and the rescuers helped remove the straw from its nose.

As helpful as a straw may be to help us consume beverages, straws may unintentionally enter the food chain of innocent creatures. A problem caused by humans can only be solved by us especially if we all work together.

Solutions
  • The first solution would be to “Say No to Straws”. When given a straw, you can simply deny it. As hard as it may seem, we don’t really need to use straws for every beverage. So you can still enjoy your Frappuccino without missing out on all the straw action.
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  • You can sign a pledge for the “One Less Straw” campaign. This campaign reminds users that plastic straws are composed of petroleum which remains stagnant on our planet even after disposal. With a couple clicks, you can support a world that denies the use of plastic straws. Click on the logo now to sign the pledge! 


  • If you really cannot live without straws, there are alternatives you can use! Stainless steel, glass and titanium straws can be easily purchased through Amazon. These reusable straws are dishwasher safe and they're small enough to carry everywhere in your bags/backpacks. 

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  • Green Empowerment is also reaching out to countries such as Ecuador that focuses primarily on energy drinking water and sanitation projects. Check out their efforts here
 Together we can put an end to plastic straws and start a new one that helps other communities worldwide.

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