A Costly Price


The time has come to evaluate the number of single-use cups, bottles, containers, cutlery and other plastic waste that gets thrown away daily. We are living in the age of a plastic wasteland and the time is now to start acting and making changes to rejuvenate the Earth for future generations. The organization Environment Oregon has led the way in making necessary these changes!

Consider this: one of the most toxic forms of plastic pollution is polystyrene foam (we call it Styrofoam). This pollutant never fully degrades! What a mess! Can you imagine how much Styrofoam has blanketed our oceans and rivers over the past 2 centuries alone?

We typically see polystyrene in take-out packaging and appliance packaging. It is that annoying piece of junk in the box that we look at one time and then try to remove from our sight as quickly as possible. It is a pesky piece of material that can easily be replaced with the right preparation. Styrofoam is a design flaw! There should be nothing we use for a few minutes that can pollute our beautiful planet for centuries. That’s why The Environment Oregon Organization is calling on state leaders to ban take-out foam cups and containers!

Removing these foam cups and containers is one small step for the change we need to heal the environment. This ban is essential in cleaning our land and oceans!

Polystyrene foam breaks apart so easily that it persists in the environment in very tiny particles. Every single tiny piece that has ever been made is still out there and could continue to threaten wildlife for hundreds of years to come! This is a costly mistake.

Birds, fish and turtles, can mistake a small piece of plastic for food so easily—especially when there are millions of pieces of plastic floating in our rivers and inevitably our oceans!

Scientists have found plastic fragments in literally hundreds of species, including 86% of all sea turtle species, 44% of all seabird species, and 43% of all marine mammal species.

Animals have their lives threatened by these tiny plastic pollutants as ingesting these fragments can often be fatal. Frequent plastic ingestion can cause animals to starve because the small particles block their digestive tracts and in turn, they starve. Not to mention, they are also unable to digest the plastic all together! Toxic chemicals in plastic not only harms animals’ health but can also harm humans as well because the plastic that animals’ intake often makes its way up the food chain and can end up our bellies!

Scientists are still documenting the scope of plastic pollution and investigating its effects. Although we have known for decades that the worst forms of plastic pollution is polystyrene foam, we still chose to use it with foam cups and take-out containers. You can get involved and help make a change to this packaging standard starting today!

The Environment Oregon Organization is calling on more than 25 states to ban take-out foam cups and containers and moving beyond plastic pollution!

By default, there are major players in the plastic industry that are not a fan of this idea! In fact, their opposition helped block a bill in banning plastic foam containers in California, but they won’t let that stop them! With persistence and perseverance, we can fight the good fight!

Regardless, across the country these plastic foam bans have passed in over 200 cities and other communities from Portland, Oregon all the way to Portland, Maine. There are also a few high-profile companies that are also jumping on board including McDonalds! By the end of this year, McDonald’s will phase out foam cups and containers worldwide, in favor of 100% recycled materials. That is noteworthy change and something to be very proud of!

The Environment Oregon Organization is ready to take these efforts to the next level, but they are going to need all the help and support they can get!

EnvironmentOregon.org has a national network that has won similar efforts to reduce waste and plastic pollution. They have been at the head of the statewide pro-recycling laws and been actively involved in the first statewide plastic bag ban in California. They know how to combine professional research and advocacy with local community support to get lasting results.

Now it’s time to make single-use plastic foam a thing of the past!

You can act now by signing the petition at EnvironmentOregon.org!

The petition is a note to the governor urging them to support the ban on foam cups and boxes made of polystyrene to reduce pollution in our waters and protect wildlife.

Signing this petition will take us beyond plastic foam and that is something we can do right now!

If we win, not only will we see much cleaner beaches and recreation parks, but we will have peace of mind in knowing it is making a difference to the wildlife, our rivers, lakes and oceans.

We can start l this movement of choosing wildlife over waste, animals over convenience and earth over plastic!

Tell our governor and lawmakers to ban plastic foam take-out cups and containers, by visiting
https://environmentoregon.webaction.org to sign today!

By: Payton Wood