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trymahjong

Seattle bans plastic straws

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Good! We don’t have 20-30 years to wait for the majority of uninformed/ignorant consumers to get on board with these plastic bans. I feel they need to be forced at this point especially for the sake of our planet, ocean and wildlife. They didn’t ask for our non biodegradable waste in their habitats. And shame on Texas for going backasswards on the city plastic bag bans.  I live in Santa Fe, NM now where there is a plastic bag ban and it has been a very easy transition for us. The affordable and durable fabric reusable bags have worked out just fine when grocery shopping and are much stronger than the flimsy plastic bags. It’s truly a no brainer. I do concur that some plastic bags will still have purpose but not in the highly wasteful amounts that we are currently using. 

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Interesting piece in the Atlantic about this:

 

https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2018/06/disposable-america/563204/?src=longreads

 

I think the industry will move toward the biodegradable/compostable straws mentioned at the end of the piece, as I can't see a return to paper straws, which truly suck (pun fully intended). Same thing needs to happen with disposable plastic bags, a more widespread switch to using materials that decay reasonably quickly as opposed to winding up in the oceans or in a landfill indefinitely. These days I generally rely on the reusable bags when grocery shopping, but I can't say I've completely sworn off plastic bags. More places need to have the big recycling barrels where they can be deposited after use, instead of just throwing them in the trash.

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On ‎7‎/‎2‎/‎2018 at 10:19 AM, intencity77 said:

Good! We don’t have 20-30 years to wait for the majority of uninformed/ignorant consumers to get on board with these plastic bans. I feel they need to be forced at this point especially for the sake of our planet, ocean and wildlife. They didn’t ask for our non biodegradable waste in their habitats. And shame on Texas for going backasswards on the city plastic bag bans.  I live in Santa Fe, NM now where there is a plastic bag ban and it has been a very easy transition for us. The affordable and durable fabric reusable bags have worked out just fine when grocery shopping and are much stronger than the flimsy plastic bags. It’s truly a no brainer. I do concur that some plastic bags will still have purpose but not in the highly wasteful amounts that we are currently using. 

 

Thankfully, in this country, we can choose among many interrelated policy and enforcement approaches and see what works with respect to overall quality of life. Backasswards is, after all, a matter of perspective.

 

Quote

“I caught a nice fish and it came up on the shore and it was flopping around and I was going to keep it. It was a hatchery fish. And I picked it up and it had a hypodermic needle sticking out the side of it,”

 

https://q13fox.com/2017/07/15/volunteers-pick-up-needles-clothes-human-waste-from-snohomish-river-banks/

 

Anyway, I don't get the impression that bags and straws in Seattle and Santa Fe are a serious threat to habitats or anything else.  I suppose some may see solid waste landfills in the U.S. as an abomination.  I think they are, overall, the result of a pretty well managed system of tradeoffs.

 

Other places aren't so lucky...

 

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/stemming-the-plastic-tide-10-rivers-contribute-most-of-the-plastic-in-the-oceans/

 

saw0218Adva32_d.png

 

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I think I noticed in membership newsletter from the zoo that there is a big promotion going on about “ a day without plastic”

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On ‎7‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 3:24 PM, Nate99 said:

Thankfully, in this country, we can choose among many interrelated policy and enforcement approaches and see what works with respect to overall quality of life. Backasswards is, after all, a matter of perspective.

Perhaps in this country, but not in this backassward state: https://setexasrecord.com/stories/511471281-texas-supreme-court-rule-affirms-laredo-s-bag-ban-is-illegal

 

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1 hour ago, dbigtex56 said:

Where's the nostalgia for paper bags?  I used to enjoy the challenge of "3d tetris"  when I worked as a sacker back in the day.  I don't see why businesses complained, they have no issue passing the cost of wages and health care to consumers/tax payers.  This should be an opportunity for business to promote themselves as eco friendly.  

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7 minutes ago, BeerNut said:

Where's the nostalgia for paper bags?  I used to enjoy the challenge of "3d tetris"  when I worked as a sacker back in the day.  I don't see why businesses complained, they have no issue passing the cost of wages and health care to consumers/tax payers.  This should be an opportunity for business to promote themselves as eco friendly.  

 

If it's an opportunity, it doesn't have to be mandated.  Some stores don't give bags at all, and they survive.  

 

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Well to differentiate themselves from other business.  Personally I would like a single use bag ban and  bottle & can deposit in this state but that will never happen.

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Tried to use edit button but didn’t work

 

i meant to write

Starbuck says

No more plastic straws

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I was up in Manhattan a few weeks and noticed that most of the upscale “ Green” foodie or juice places didn’t automatically give you a straw with your drink......you had to request one. I’m wondering if banning plastic straws is perhaps a slow moving thing.

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I've noticed a couple of places that I wouldn't really think of as either back away from plastic straws 

 - Flying saucer has switched to paper straws for the glass of water that you should be drinking with beer; you're not drinking enough water if the straw gets soggy

 - Mod pizza I noticed has the biodegradable plastic straws

 

and unintentionally, the Chick-Fil-A at the airport didn't give me a straw, but I think that was more them forgetting.

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Quote

"Bans can play a role," says oceanographer Kara Lavendar Law, a co-author with Jambeck of the 2015 Science study. "We are not going to solve the problem by banning straws."

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-04-science-amount-straws-plastic-pollution.html#jCp

 

sums it up pretty good.

 

it's a waste of government time/money to ban straws. 

 

as was referenced by nate99 in July, something needs to be done to help the bigger polluters stop/slow their pollution.

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The plastic bag ban is one of several annoying things about Austin. If someone really wants to go on a crusade about this, they should contact the Chinese consulate.

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On 7/9/2018 at 8:17 AM, Nate99 said:

 

If it's an opportunity, it doesn't have to be mandated.  Some stores don't give bags at all, and they survive.  

 

 

While living in Germany, all stores would charge for bags of any kind whether paper or plastic. Now everyone carries a backpack in general, and if they go to a grocery store then they bring an actual grocer bag. I agree with you. The market always dictates these things. Plastic here is so cheap that companies don't bother to put a price on it (same with plastic straws, or for refills on drinks). Besides banning anything is always tedious and overly authoritarian. A better alternative would be to persuade companies to charge for plastic bags. In Germany a single plastic bag was 10 cents (in euro cents). Put the price of a plastic bag at 15 cents and immediately you would see a large reduction in usage of plastic bags. 

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When I got back from Manhattan, I noticed Hay Merchant has changed from plastic straws to biodegrade. 

In Manhattan you notice lots of people pulling out stainless steels straws at coffee and juice places.

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On 1/22/2019 at 3:03 PM, Luminare said:

 

While living in Germany, all stores would charge for bags of any kind whether paper or plastic. Now everyone carries a backpack in general, and if they go to a grocery store then they bring an actual grocer bag. I agree with you. The market always dictates these things. Plastic here is so cheap that companies don't bother to put a price on it (same with plastic straws, or for refills on drinks). Besides banning anything is always tedious and overly authoritarian. A better alternative would be to persuade companies to charge for plastic bags. In Germany a single plastic bag was 10 cents (in euro cents). Put the price of a plastic bag at 15 cents and immediately you would see a large reduction in usage of plastic bags. 

 

I don't understand why it has to be a government ban, or nothing. they should do what they do with gasoline. tax it. tax straws, and tax plastic bags. as the gas tax is used to fund a portion of the roadways, so too could they use the money from plastic bag tax to clean plastics from our waterways and ecosystems.

 

if we (as a society, not as individuals) could be responsible adults and clean up after ourselves, then a tax like this wouldn't be necessary.

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I think plastic grocery bags are the biggest issue - they're dirt cheap, ubiquitous, and float easily in the air, much less the water.  I also hear they look similar to jelly fish in the water.

 

I think about this every time I go to HEB and they put my 6 pack into two plastic bags without me asking

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3 hours ago, cspwal said:

I think plastic grocery bags are the biggest issue - they're dirt cheap, ubiquitous, and float easily in the air, much less the water.  I also hear they look similar to jelly fish in the water.

 

I think about this every time I go to HEB and they put my 6 pack into two plastic bags without me asking

 

Just deposit the bags in the bag recycle barrel outside the HEB on your way out.  Or bring them back on your next trip, that's what I do.

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2 minutes ago, august948 said:

 

Just deposit the bags in the bag recycle barrel outside the HEB on your way out.  Or bring them back on your next trip, that's what I do.

 

It seems like it should be common sense, but sadly I've seen far too many people who simply could care less about their actions.

 

I remember watching one time, in disbelief, someone driving away from IAH toss their fast food garbage out their window. 

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6 hours ago, cspwal said:

I think plastic grocery bags are the biggest issue - they're dirt cheap, ubiquitous, and float easily in the air, much less the water.  I also hear they look similar to jelly fish in the water.

 

I think about this every time I go to HEB and they put my 6 pack into two plastic bags without me asking

 

I use these instead of the plastic bags:

 

 

For what seems at first glance to be a cheesy infomercial product worthy of Ron Popeil, they work quite well, and despite reasonably heavy usage I haven't had any of the durability problems mentioned in the video comments. Almost invariably, someone will ask where I got them whenever I'm at the grocery store. 

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Posted (edited)

I have that bag!

 

also, I to joined the “slow moving” anti- plastic straw movement.......really just raised eyebrows and. Verbal tsk-tsk to anyone who serves me a plastic straw. Uhm? Does that qualify for Raising awareness of a.small but disheartening environmental problem.

Also— every family member got a stainless steel (with cleaning brush) straw for Valentines Day.

Edited by trymahjong
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Plastic straw ban? What trivia. I suppose I'm suppose to worry about cow farts also? When I think of the problems my parents and mother in law's generation faced: The great flu pandemic, the Great Depression, their parents dying at an early age, the Dust Bowl,  WWII, the threat of global communism, polio epidemics,  raising numerous children , sorry but  plastic straws are a mountain out of a mole hill. 

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While some of you are bad mouthing Texas ( over straws? how trivial) hundreds of thousands are moving here for a better life including a student I taught who moved from Rwanda after her parents and most of her siblings were butchered.  This butchery an off shoot of the Great Congo wars in which over 5 million have died. Vietnamese and Cambodians moved here to flee the communist terror in the homelands and have a better life. These people had real problems. Texas has provided opportunity for millions making it the fastest growing state in the U.S. But does Texas deserve praise? No .It's a assbackward state according to some of  you. You should be grateful for this splendid State and not verbally abuse it over small issues.

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is anyone badmouthing Texas? is anyone badmouthing Texas because of straws?

 

the reality is, plastics pollution is the biggest environmental issue we face. far greater than climate change (whether you believe in that sort of thing or not). 

 

these plastics are getting into our food system. if that doesn't alarm you, it should.

 

I agree, your drinking straws are probably not having a huge effect, especially when you consider where most of the plastics pollution is coming from. overall, for the sake of our food chain (and not eating plastic), plastics need to go away. completely.

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My error, not plastic straws, but plastic bags. Nevertheless it seems extreme to verbally abuse our state over a dispute over this sort of thing ( not by you samagon. Your posts shed light on this issue). With other folks in the "environmental movement"  there has been much hysteria since the beginning. I remember the first Earth Day in 1970 ( I was in high school)  and all the Paul Erlich doom and gloom, followed later by Global Cooling, followed by Global Warming, followed by Climate Change all infused with levels of hysteria. It is tiresome. Very little light but much heat in discussions. 

 

As for reducing pollution, who can be against that? I live along Lake Houston and am appalled at all the trash that winds up there. Some of it is due to the rapid growth in the area, some to sheer carelessness. It is irritating and disgusting. If industry could make these things decay, and decay much faster that would be helpful. 

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1 hour ago, Twinsanity02 said:

My error, not plastic straws, but plastic bags....

 

As for reducing pollution, who can be against that? I live along Lake Houston and am appalled at all the trash that winds up there. Some of it is due to the rapid growth in the area, some to sheer carelessness. It is irritating and disgusting. If industry could make these things decay, and decay much faster that would be helpful. 

 

Don't plastic bags, cups, and bottles make up a significant portion of the trash that winds up on/in Lake Houston?

 

Then, there's this:  https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/03/whale-dies-88-pounds-plastic-philippines/

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4 hours ago, mollusk said:

 

Don't plastic bags, cups, and bottles make up a significant portion of the trash that winds up on/in Lake Houston?

 

Then, there's this:  https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/03/whale-dies-88-pounds-plastic-philippines/

 

yup, this was the article I posted a few days ago, looks like they revised their numbers.

 

The main points I found in the article weren't that one whale died, while sad, it's a single whale. but to read the rest of the article, it's quite disparaging.

 

Quote

As the plastic pollution crisis grows, more and more dolphins, whales, birds, and fish are found dead with their stomachs full of plastic. In 2015, scientists estimated that around 90 percent of all seabirds have ingested some amount of plastic

 

“Basically, wherever we're looking for plastics, we're finding them,” says Savoca, “Now, we’re seeing that even in places humans never even have been close to, we find our trash. And not just that, but animals eating our trash.”

 

Blatchley has recovered 61 whales that died in the nearby Davao Gulf. Of those, he estimates that plastics were the cause of death for about 45 of them. The problem is exacerbated, he says, by heavy fishing in the region, which has limited the amount of food available for the whales to eat, making them even more likely to try to eat plastics floating nearby.

“It’s just tragic that this is becoming the norm, to expect that these whales will die because of plastic rather than from natural causes,” he says. “We’re losing them faster than they can evolve to learn not to eat the plastic.”

 

Every ounce of plastic in the environment is not natural and put there by humans.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/19/2019 at 11:05 PM, samagon said:

is anyone badmouthing Texas? is anyone badmouthing Texas because of straws?

 

the reality is, plastics pollution is the biggest environmental issue we face. far greater than climate change (whether you believe in that sort of thing or not). 

 

these plastics are getting into our food system. if that doesn't alarm you, it should.

 

I agree, your drinking straws are probably not having a huge effect, especially when you consider where most of the plastics pollution is coming from. overall, for the sake of our food chain (and not eating plastic), plastics need to go away. completely.

 

I have to agree, that while I don't discount climate change, it is a very serious threat, unfortunately in the public's eye it overshadows a lot of extremely serious environmental/human health threats, like plastics, endocrine disruptors, oceanic dead zones, deforestation, fresh water depletion....

Edited by Reefmonkey

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