(sponsored by Cool Cups)
Almost all of us love to go to the beach. I love to drive down to Santa Monica or Malibu and admire the magnificence and beauty of our precious ocean. Some of us like to swim, others like to lie in the sand. The ocean provides us with relaxation, recreation, a great opportunity to spend time with loved ones, and if you are into water sports, a great playground for that.
The ocean is the home of millions of living creatures; it is a major part of our entire planet's eco-system and it helps provide us with oxygen. Most of Earth’s oxygen comes from tiny ocean plants called phytoplankton that live near the water’s surface and drift with the currents.
In an article I read on HealtheBay.com a not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping keep our ocean, beaches and waterways clean, they mention how “Plastics Threaten Ocean Ecology and Our Food Web.” In this article Miriam Goldstein, a researcher at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego, speaks of how they have done a study that offers the first proof that plastics in the open ocean are affecting marine invertebrates with consequences for the entire marine food web, because nearly all plastics break down into smaller and smaller pieces, and everything from turtles to seabirds and fish mistake bits of plastic for food. They estimated that fish in the intermediate ocean depths of the North Pacific Ocean ingest plastic at a rate of roughly 12,000 to 24,000 tons per year.
One of the ways Heal the Bay is working to reduce the amount of plastic that ends up polluting the ocean and threatening the fish we consume, is by advocating for the banning of single-use plastic bags in Los Angeles. Less than five per cent of the 19 billion plastic bags used in California every year are recycled, and many of these plastic bags become litter and eventually end up polluting our ocean.
Photo by Brandon Scott
You can participate in Heal the Bay beach cleanups. Find out more...
We, as citizens of Earth, have the duty and responsibility to help keep our beaches and ocean free of trash, especially plastic junk. According to National Geographic, Any kind of trash can get into the ocean—from glass bottles to aluminum cans to medical waste. The vast majority of marine debris, however, is plastic. Scientists have collected up to 750,000 bits of plastic in a single square kilometer (or 1.9 million bits per square mile) of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, also known as the Eastern Pacific Garbage Patch and the Pacific Trash Vortex, lies in a high-pressure area between the states of Hawaii and California. This area is in the middle of the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre.
Marlene Affeld stated in Liberty Voice that “The world’s cavalier disposal of plastic items, especially plastic water bottles, fishing gear and plastic bags, is unknowingly causing the deaths of millions of land and sea mammals, fish, birds and reptiles annually. The oceans of the world are awash with choked dead fish, marine mammals, and water fowl, which become entangled in human debris.”
So, what can we do?
For starters, be aware of your trash. Remind yourself that lots of your trash can end up in the ocean. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle as much as possible. We can hugely help reduce the amount of plastic that ends up in our waterways by simply avoiding using things like plastic bottles as much as possible.
Get a reusable container and fill your water bottle up rather than constantly acquiring plastic bottles
of water and throwing them out. Governmental and industry sources have calculated
that at least 50 million plastic bottles are thrown away (not recycled) every day in the U.S. Enough plastic bottles are thrown away each year in the United States to circle the Earth four times.
From Eco-Champions.org, I share this Eco-Tip on how to recycle small plastic cups.
Recycling your plastic cups will reduce your carbon footprint and really help our landfills and ocean be less cluttered with plastic. 4oz plastic cups used for some foods like gel snacks make great ergonomic companions.
They can be used as containers to hold paper clips, screws, rings and so many other tiny things. This will also help keep your house neat from the chaos of random little things you don’t know where to put. You can also paint them your favorite color to blend into your decor with non toxic eco-friendly paint.
You can use them to keep loose change at home or in your car seats’ cup holders. And next time you go to the beach, grown ups and kids alike can use them to collect little seashells.
Whatever you do, when you do go to the beach, do not leave ANYTHING behind. Pick up after yourself and always try to use recycling bins.
Finally, for now, and addressing one of my top pet peeves, here is an eco-tip I invite you to seriously consider. This will help minimize and hopefully avoid entrapping turtles, dolphins and many sea creatures: Take the plastic soda can rings that keep 6-packs together and tear them up before you dispose of them. You can then place them in a recycling bin, or come up with another use for them.
And so I wish with all my heart that this has been of some help and inspiration and that together we can avoid tons of trash ending up in our ocean.
If you have any eco- tips you wish to share, send them to everyone you know and include Champions@EcoChampion.org so they can be posted for others to see.
San Fernando Valley Kids from from Mars Academy’s Kids Make A Difference enjoying some delicious, refreshing Cool Cups after a day of helping clean the beach.
This important message is sponsored by Cool Cups, a Natural Snack/Vegan Company from Santa Monica CA that specializes in manufacturing the number-one selling natural gelatin-free snack in America.
All Natural Cool Cups are plant-based, gelatin free Snacks whose manufacturers and staff care about the ocean. Cool Cups uses sustainable ocean seaweed to make their gels instead of gelatin, which, in most commercial gels, are made with animal biproducts. If you did not know this, here is a short video about that.
Cool Cups is proud to be part of the “better for you” snacks and invites everyone to be proactive and creative in recycling plastic cups.