Plastic straws have gotten a lot of bad press lately. Forget being stared down because you forgot your keep Cup, being straw shamed is the next gripe coming to a workplace or friendship circle near you. But why the shift?
It is estimated that Australians alone use 10 million straws every day. Which equates for something crazy like 2.9 billion a year. You might dispose of them mindfully but these flimsy pieces of plastic will haunt us and sea animals for the rest of our lives. Straws easily blow in the wind and end up on the ocean floor or on our shoreline. Turtles and larger animals swallow these straws but also due to their thin nature over a short period of time in the sun they easily disintegrate into microplastics which fish and whales mistake for plankton.
What are big companies doing about it?
The conversation around straws has been massive this year with the public encouraging large companies, restaurants, bars and councils to take action against straws. Wimbledon was the first major sporting event to go plastic straw free, making the switch to only supply paper straws at the 2018 Grand Slam. Fast food giants McDonalds and Starbucks have joined forces to switch to paper straws by 2020. The Adelaide councils are leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of Australia announcing an immediate ban to plastic straws.
What you can do about it
Say no or make the switch. When you're at home is the easiest place to start switch the plastic straws you use in smoothies and drinks for bamboo or stainless steel straws.
Take it the next step further. Are you a big cold drink guzzler? In the warmer months carry a straw with you wherever you go. You'd be surprised at the number of straws you use in a week when you are more conscious of your consumption.
Want to make a difference fill out this form and drop it off to your local cafe, restaurant and bar to encourage them to stop using plastic straws.
Every little bit counts there's no time to waste.