And they can’t be recycled.*
Unless you have a health issue that prevents you from drinking directly from a glass, using a straw is superfluous. If you’re concerned about aging, sucking on a straw–like smoking–can cause wrinkles around the lips. If you’re concerned about the environment, many straws are made from polypropylene (#5)—a petroleum bi-product. And since they’re not stamped with the #5 plastic symbol, they’re not recyclable.*
Off to our landfills straws go. Or waterways and, eventually, our oceans where large pockets of plastic soups threaten the food chain. (A friend who cleans up beaches on a regular basis claims straws are the second most frequent item found).
Lots more than 60 million straws a day thrown away.
While I had a difficult time locating stats on plastic straw consumption and waste, I think I can safely deduce from McDonald’s website that, since they serve 60 million people globally per day, at least that many straws are used and thrown out each day. That doesn’t account for other fast food chains, restaurants, coffee joints or families that purchase straws for home use. Plastic straw consumption and waste could be epic.
If you need a straw, why not a glass one?
GlassDharma straws are sturdy, fun and even elegant. Made in the U.S.A. from a heavy duty glass (borosilicate, the same glass used for coffee pots), these straws even has a lifetime guarantee against breakage… Read more on elephantjournal.com
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* I recommend checking with your local recycling company to clarify what can and can’t be recycled, as it varies not only by recycling company, but by city/town. But beware: in my experience, you need to ask more than one person. I’ve found the answers vary and often times start with “I think” or “I’m pretty sure.” Ask who you should speak to for a 100% for sure answer.
Filed under: environment, family, food, recycling, sustainability Tagged: | blog, carbon footprint, eco-friendly living, environment, fast food, life, lifestyle, plastic, plastic straws, pollution, random, recycling, sustainability