Welcome to The-Last-Straw.org! We hope that you enjoy your time here as much as we do. Our goal is to educate the masses on the benefits of getting rid of plastic straws and we encourage you to get engaged and leave feedback for the community.
Let’s start with how our Oceans cover 70% of the Earth’s surface and how they provide for us.
On the conversation of mental health alone, the ocean has been proven to relieve stress, lower anxiety, and relieve symptoms of depression. Remember the last time you walked onto a beach and felt the grainy (or soft) sand between your toes, watched the waves crash down and the water seductively tease you on the shore. You felt the sea mist on your skin and inhaled the salty scent of mindfulness. At the time, you may not have realized that the moving water was encompassing you in a field of negative ions. And although they are called ‘negative’ ions, they are actually oxygen atoms with extra-negatively-charged atoms, bringing us more energy and vitality. Once they hit our bloodstream, they produce biochemical reactions increasing our levels of serotonin, the ‘happy’ mood chemical found naturally in our brains.
On top of keeping us sain and (somewhat) stable, the Ocean also provides us with over half of the World’s oxygen and absorbs 50 times more carbon dioxide than the atmosphere. It provides us with transportation, food, recreation, medicine, and $282 billion for the U.S. economy alone. But when it comes to using the transportation and recreation that the sea allows, we must respect this ecosystem system and be sure not to damage it so it will still provide us with the food and medicine that we depend upon so heavily.
Why are we picking on plastic?
There is no doubt that we have a plastic epidemic happening all around the world. U.S. born, Leo Baekeland, invented the first all synthetic plastic in 1907. And did you know that EVERY SINGLE piece of plastic ever made still exists? Plastics degrade (to a point) and break down into smaller particles, but they never BIOdegrade. And you know why you are not supposed to throw that plastic plate and cutlery into the bonfire? Because when plastic is burned it releases dangerous chemicals like hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, heavy metals, furans, dioxins, and particulates. These emissions cause respiratory issues, damage immune systems, and are potentially carcinogenic. It is up to us to be the pioneers in accepting it was a mistake and ending the production of plastic products everywhere.
The-Last-Straw.org’s focus is on one product- the plastic straw. The U.S. alone uses over 500 million plastic straws EVERY DAY. That is enough straws to go around the world 2.5 times…every day! And to put that in perspective even more- the U.S. is only 4.27% of the entire global population! Even though you think you are recycling your plastic straws, most plastic straws are made out of type 5 plastic, or polypropylene, which isn’t fully biodegradable or accepted by most recycling facilities. And even if you do have recyclable straws, they are so lightweight that they tend to fall through the strainers and end up in our oceans regardless. In the past year, plastic straws have moved from the 11th spot to the 6th most collected ocean trash by quantity. When the ocean animals start eating our plastics, it fills up their stomachs and can’t digest, preventing them from eating real nourishment, and causing them to starve to death. The Ocean provides us with over 15% of high quality protein around the world which is about 200 billion pounds a year. And we need to protect it.
There is no time like the present
The Last Straw’s mission is to completely stop the sale and reproduction of single-use plastic straws worldwide. You may think this sounds impossible, but we like to think of it as very realistic. It all starts with a mindset. Then the follow through. One person at a time.
If you ever need a hand or have any questions, please feel free to leave them below or shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be more than happy to help you out.
All the best,