Plastic State Of Mind – From Ben Zolno

by Mark Lovett on February 1, 2011

The beauty of the amazing digital age in which we all live/thrive/struggle is that creative expression can expand like a spider’s web and trap you when least expected.  Don’t ask me how I encountered this brilliant video from Ben Zolno (Writer/Lyricist/Director/Bag Boy/Editor) just enjoy the message.

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San Francisco Green Film FestivalCommissioned by Green Sangha, this parody video highlights the fact that the vast majority of all grocery store purchases end up in plastic bags which are only used once before finally being tossed in with the rest of the garbage.

Shoppers worldwide use over 500 billion plastic  bags each year, and the number is rising.  Few of us give a second though to the process, but the consequences are anything but trivial.

Plastic Bags are not Your Friend!

Plastic bags are made from a non-renewable resource: oil!
An estimated 3 million barrels of oil are required to produce the 19 billion plastic bags used annually in California.

Greenhouse gas emissions
Plastic manufacturing’s air pollution contributes greatly to global “weirding” (extreme weather of all sorts) we are experiencing is the result.

Non-biodegradable
Plastic is food for no one.  It never completely breaks down.

Litter
We see bags hanging on trees, along the roadside, slipping down the storm drain, and floating in the ocean.  Even when we do put them in the garbage, they don’t always make it to the landfill.  47% of landfill blow-away trash is plastic.

Toxicity
Manufacturing plastic releases toxins in the air, as does our recycling of plastic.  The additives used in plastic are often toxic and can leach into our food.  The surface of plastic is chemically attractive to some of the worst toxins in our environment (e.g., PCBs and pesticide metabolites).

Harm to Marine Life
More than 100,000 marine mammals and turtles, one million seabirds, and countless fish worldwide are killed by plastic rubbish each year.

Choking the ocean
Beaches on every continent are now littered with plastic scraps and particles.  In a recent surface trawl of the North Pacific Gyre, 46 pounds of plastic were discovered for every pound of zooplankton.

We’re eating plastic
Fine particles of plastic are taken in by living filter-feeders throughout the ocean.  These plastic-laden small creatures are then eaten by larger animals and plastics work their way up the food chain, all the way to our seafood menu.

Be the Change You Want to See in the World – Take your reusable bags wherever you shop; if you forget it, go get it!

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

zablon mukuba February 8, 2011 at 5:27 am

plastic use has only short term benefit

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