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why recycle plastic?
Plastics don't decompose/biodegrade. Instead, they photodegrade, breaking down into small particles from the sun's ultra-violet ray. The particles that remain in the ocean absorbs toxins and enter into the food chain. Fish, birds, and other marine animals eat the plastics mistaking the particles for food. Hundreds of thousands of animals die each year from ingesting plastics. Entanglement is another problem with plastics. Sea turtles report problems with entanglement so it is not just small animals that encounter these problems. It gets into the human body when we eat seafood.
Each year between 500 BILLION and one TRILLION plastic bags are used world-wide. The average American uses an average of 500 plastic bags per person, per year! This amounts to over 155 billion bags used in the United States alone.
Even with photodegradation, and the small amount of plastics incinerated, basically every piece of plastic that was ever made still exists in our environment in some shape or form. It is up to us to help combat the problems with plastics.
Plastic yarn (sometimes referred to as 'plarn') can be easily made out of plastic bags. By re-purposing the bags into a usable medium, a variety of crocheted or knitted products can be made, turning those old grocery bags into long-lasting, yet daily-use products!
The Surfrider Foundation has a campaign to help with the unwanted effects of plastics in our oceans. You, too, can help with a donation to their campaign.
Simply visit Rise Above Plastics and support the Surfrider Foundation's work to help keep our oceans healthy and protect marine animals.