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Guest Post: 5 Things You Can Do to Reduce Single-Use Plastics by Rick Crawford

Population, policy and pollution are the three main threats to fisheries around the world. I call these threats “the 3P’s” and through “The Sustainable Angler” I am trying to educate and create more awareness about what I believe to be fixable problems.

If you have spent any time on a river, beach or stream, then you have seen single-use plastics littering them.  Whether it is plastic bags, straws, utensils or bottles, single-use plastics are everywhere and in 30 years the ocean will contain more plastic by weight than fish!  Below is a video of some footage shot off the coast of Bali demonstrating what is happening to our fisheries:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31CdhLMV7Es

That is simply unacceptable.  One of the thing’s a lot of people are unaware of is that plastic never goes away.  Plastic will be here indefinitely and to date only 9% of the plastic ever created has been recycled.  What’s more is that with worldwide population increasing, the need to refuse single-use plastics is more serious than ever before, which is why we wanted to remind you to not just “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” but “REFUSE” single-use plastics from the get-go.  So here are a few simple and easy things you can do starting today to help protect what you love by refusing single-use plastics:

  1. Buy a reusable water bottle and coffee mug to eliminate plastic bottles and throw-away coffee cups.  Klean Kanteen, YETI and others have some great options.
  2. Get yourself a couple of metal and/or glass straws, or simply sip your drink, to refuse single-use straws.  Simply Straws has some good options.
  3. Keep reusable shopping bags in your car so you don’t need single-use plastic bags, which can usually be bought at your local grocery store.
  4. Purchase a bamboo toothbrush, which is a rapidly renewable material and keeps plastics out of our oceans and landfills.  Brush with Bamboo is one of our favorites as it is a USDA Certified Bio Based product.
  5. Keep a pair of utensils in your car to avoid plastic one’s and alternative food storage wraps such as the Khala Cloths, which is another excellent way to eliminate single-use plastic like Saran Wrap.

BONUS:  If you live in South Carolina, please contact your elected officials TODAY as they are voting on whether or not to allow local municipalities the ability to ban plastic bags.  Conservation Voters of South Carolina has made it easy to send an email to tell them to Vote NO on H.3529!

Additionally, it is good to hook up with local nonprofits chapters of Surfrider Foundation, Trout Unlimited or Waterkeeper Alliance in your area to attend a beach sweep or clean up.

I hope this information is helpful in your decision to become a “Sustainable Angler” and refuse single-use plastics!  If everyone made these small adjustments, we could make a tremendous impact!

 

Rick's a great guy and he knows what he's talking about! Read More of Rick Crawford's Sustainable Angler here.

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