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  1. #1
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    Jul 2005
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    Massive plastic garbage dump- Pacific Ocean

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...&feed=rss.news

    (There was a link of the Yahoo home page today of a piece they did on the news... however I can't seem to get a URL from that. It may still on there for a little while longer though.)

    This is horrfying!!!!
    It weighs 3 1/2 MILLION TONS and is TWICE THE SIZE OF TEXAS!!!!!!!!!!!

    Apparently 80% of the plastic in this floating dump is PLASTIC and originated from land and also boats (what the hell are people doing throwing their trash off their boat? idiots!!) It has been CATASTROPHIC for marine wildlife... birds and turles.. who think floating plastic bags are jellyfish.
    This is caused by our GROWING DEPENDENCE ON PLASTIC.

    I have visions of a future where plastic will just take over the world.. the oceans will be choked with it, waterways will be completely choked with it (many already are)... the ground everywhere will be littered and we will be wading through plastic trash all over the gound up to our knees. Bits of degrading plastic will be everywhere.. in the soil, in the trees, in our bodies. Crazy, you say?? Well, we are actually going in that direction.

    I definitely have been thinking about plastic for a while... I try NOT to buy things with a lot of packaging. And if a clerk wants to give me a plastic bag for one or 2 things.. I say, 'no thanks,, keep it'-- we are so used to just taking it without even thinking. And I have started bringing my own cloth bags to carry stuff.
    Also by going to farmer's markets (or growing some of your own food) you are reducing the amount of food packaging you consume. However our computers are made out of plastic, and that is hard to avoid.. but we have to start somewhere.

    I also am NOT a fan of the 'convenience store drink phenomenon'... which is what I call our insane dependence on plastic bottle drinks.. which are EVERYWHERE... you can barely go 3 feet without encountering a vending machine or a store that sells sodas, bottles water, etc.. now COME ON. Our ancestors survived for centuries without these. Are we really gonna die of starvation or thirst if we don't have a vending machine, or soda/water in a plastic bottle, on every corner, in every school, etc......? It's all advertising. JUST SAY NO!
    In fact I used to drink bottled water (and recycled the bottles at least).. but I now am unhappy with that. I am getting a Brita filter on my faucet and am switching to good old tap water. (horrors!)
    I do love Gerolsteiner though, which is in a glass bottle.. but it's from Germany,, so they use petrochemicals to get it across the ocean.... *sigh*.... These days it's an endless search to do less damage.. since the companies that sell products to us DO NOT CARE.. they only care about profits!! SO, as always,, it's up to us to vote with our choices and our dollars!

  2. #2
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    Jun 2007
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    33,799
    I've never been a fan of individual drink packages. There expensive anyways. The kids always wanted squeeze it's. But they got koolaid in a glass instead. We do buy small bottles of water every once in a while. But that's to refresh our supply of bottles we wash and use over and over until they wear out. Bottled water kind of scares me. At least I know where my water comes from. And the county mails out a yearly water test.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    3,374
    yeah, its a shame--way too much plastic out there no doubt--We always recycle cuz I drink about 5 bottles of Tropicana Sugar Free FruitPunch a week,and it only comes in plastic,unfortunately

  4. #4
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    Aug 2003
    Location
    Colorado
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    Yes, and I guess the plastic is made from oil?

    I was given a really nice market basket for my Birthday; the inside is sturdy and is velcroed around a wire rim, so you can take it out and wash it when it gets dirty. The handle folds down for storage. It's big enough to hold quite a few groceries.

    I think you can get them at TJMaxx and other places; probably you can order one off the internet. I recently went to a church Bazzaar and I got lots of comments from the "older ladies" on my tote basket.

    Didn't san Francisco stop using plastic bags?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    2,968
    hi martha-
    yes, they did.. it was in that video clip (yahoo front page- from this morning, now gone). i think that's pretty amazing.... it says they actually made it ILLEGAL for big chain stores to use plastic bags!! ha,, good! i bet people are griping and complaining like crazy about it. yeah, it sucks to be inconvenienced, doesn't it? well,,, if they got a good look at that dump i bet most people might change their tune. in fact i am surprised that a very comprehensive VIDEO hasn't been made about the dump.. or even a documentary film.... to open peoples' eyes about the plastic problem.
    or,, maybe one has already been made...? anyone know?
    and actually, in that news clip,, they did not show an actual picture or recording of the dump. why not?? where's the photos of the darn thing? it's not like we don't have the technology to take photos of it!

  6. #6
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    Jul 2005
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    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15590510

    here's another article on it... the greenpeace people seem to be the only ones collecting (and analyzing) the trash.
    you know every time i eat fish now i really, really enjoy it,, and i'm kind of sad.. we took fish for granted for so long... but if things keep going the way they are (and why wouldn't they? we humans are too dumb to change).. within our lifetimes, fish will be too depleted- and the ones left,, way too poisoned... to eat anymore. the ocenas will literally become earth's garbage dump. (oh wait, they've been that already, for years!)

  7. #7
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    Aug 2003
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    Colorado
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    Quote Originally Posted by reb View Post
    hi martha-
    yes, they did.. it was in that video clip (yahoo front page- from this morning, now gone). i think that's pretty amazing.... it says they actually made it ILLEGAL for big chain stores to use plastic bags!! ha,, good! i bet people are griping and complaining like crazy about it. yeah, it sucks to be inconvenienced, doesn't it? well,,, if they got a good look at that dump i bet most people might change their tune. in fact i am surprised that a very comprehensive VIDEO hasn't been made about the dump.. or even a documentary film.... to open peoples' eyes about the plastic problem.
    or,, maybe one has already been made...? anyone know?
    and actually, in that news clip,, they did not show an actual picture or recording of the dump. why not?? where's the photos of the darn thing? it's not like we don't have the technology to take photos of it!
    However, most grocery stores have recycle bins for plastic bags. I guess the problem is so many don't bother to take the time to recycle.

    We have been recycling paper and plastic for years here, but I guess there's no way to know if the recycling companies are really doing it.

  8. #8
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    at home
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    All forms of packaging are on overkill. A way needs to be found to package everything in a minimum of material, which is all recyclable. So much unnecessary cardboard, and plastics, with too much advertising.

  9. #9
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    Colorado
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzzm1 View Post
    All forms of packaging are on overkill. A way needs to be found to package everything in a minimum of material, which is all recyclable. So much unnecessary cardboard, and plastics, with too much advertising.
    Part of that is liability too. We don't want anyone tampering with our food or medicines. Sometimes it takes me ten minutes to get something opened. All the extra clear plastic rims around medicines and bottles, etc. cost us more as consumers, and add to the trash.

    Yes it would be good if all material was recyclable. I don't think recycling is a very lucrative business right now, so we need a way to give incentive to this type of business.

    I think our town uses city funds to help promote recycling - and everyone is given a bin to put out front; those things cost money when done en mass.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    354
    We bought a bunch of tote bags at the flea market awhile back-13 of them for $1. They're misprints or canceled orders that the tote bag company no longer has a use for. Lol-one of them is for a golf club and the quote was "Not smokin' improves your strokin'." Wonder how many of those they printed before someone noticed the other way of interpreting it?

    We are completely hooked on them. We take them to the grocery store with us-they hold more groceries than the plastic sacks, stack nicer in the car, are easier to carry-you can toss a couple over your shoulder as well as holding them in your hands and they distribute the weight better. I always keep one folded up in my purse if if I run in somewhere to pick up a few things I've got a bag handy. After we grocery shop we just toss them back in the car the next time we go out so they're always handy.

    We figured we were accumulating between 10-15 plastic grocery sacks a week before we started using the tote bags so now we're saving between 520-780 plastic bags a year. We got my mom some for Christmas (lol-yes we're the kind of family that buys cheap bags with inadvertent sexual innuendos on them for Christmas presents.) So there's another 520-780 bags a year saved. If even 50% of people stopped using them and switched to cloth bags think how many less bags would be needed.

    Ok-I'm really passionate about my grocery bags. I know- I'm a dork-but they're just so much better than plastic and so much nicer at the same time.

    Becca


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    East Coast USA
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    482
    I don't remember where I read it so I don't have a link but I heard that there is something about the plastic in bottled water containers that makes it dangerous to use over. Something breaks down quicker than in other plastics. Gonna see if I can find a link. BRB.

    Quote Originally Posted by SuziQ View Post
    I've never been a fan of individual drink packages. There expensive anyways. The kids always wanted squeeze it's. But they got koolaid in a glass instead. We do buy small bottles of water every once in a while. But that's to refresh our supply of bottles we wash and use over and over until they wear out. Bottled water kind of scares me. At least I know where my water comes from. And the county mails out a yearly water test.

  12. #12
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    Jul 2004
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    at home
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    23,626
    Quote Originally Posted by beakiebean View Post
    We bought a bunch of tote bags at the flea market awhile back-13 of them for $1. They're misprints or canceled orders that the tote bag company no longer has a use for. Lol-one of them is for a golf club and the quote was "Not smokin' improves your strokin'." Wonder how many of those they printed before someone noticed the other way of interpreting it?

    We are completely hooked on them. We take them to the grocery store with us-they hold more groceries than the plastic sacks, stack nicer in the car, are easier to carry-you can toss a couple over your shoulder as well as holding them in your hands and they distribute the weight better. I always keep one folded up in my purse if if I run in somewhere to pick up a few things I've got a bag handy. After we grocery shop we just toss them back in the car the next time we go out so they're always handy.

    We figured we were accumulating between 10-15 plastic grocery sacks a week before we started using the tote bags so now we're saving between 520-780 plastic bags a year. We got my mom some for Christmas (lol-yes we're the kind of family that buys cheap bags with inadvertent sexual innuendos on them for Christmas presents.) So there's another 520-780 bags a year saved. If even 50% of people stopped using them and switched to cloth bags think how many less bags would be needed.

    Ok-I'm really passionate about my grocery bags. I know- I'm a dork-but they're just so much better than plastic and so much nicer at the same time.

    Becca
    Becca, as many bags as you have, I would think you would want to give us a couple of them. Sounded like a great deal. Way too much packaging being used these days. I shop at Costco, and all of the tools, etc, are packed in the heavy molded plastic packages. Such an overkill.

    Too bad they can't build a floating recycling plant, and harvest that giant garbage mass, or tow it to an island and build the recycling plant there.

  13. #13
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    Jul 2006
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
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    446
    If more stores would do like Aldi's grocery chain does, and charge customers a small fee for each grocery bag, that would cut down on waste *tremendously*! We're even bigger cheapskates than we are wasteful, and the idea of paying ***gasp*** a nickel for a bag would make us stop and think.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    33,799
    Quote Originally Posted by kidzndogznme View Post
    I don't remember where I read it so I don't have a link but I heard that there is something about the plastic in bottled water containers that makes it dangerous to use over. Something breaks down quicker than in other plastics. Gonna see if I can find a link. BRB.
    I've been hearing more and more about that too. It's getting to where I don't want to use anything plastic! If you find a link, I would appreciate it.

    ******

    I've always been one to re-use our grocery bags for garbage bags, lunch bags etc. I've cut down alot on the bags I get though. Stores try to put everything including milk and two liter bottles in bags. Alot of items are simply easier to handle without the dang bags, so I request no bags for them. You all have motivated me to go the cloth bag route! Question for you, do the clerks give you dirty looks if they have to use your bag versus their spinning pastic bag pedistal?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    On the bank of Lake Pontchartrain
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    1,777
    I am a member of this group morsbags, sociable guerilla bagging.
    http://morsbags.com/html/about.html

    Cloth grocery bags are so easy to make and I love that they are reusable, not to mention sturdier.

    I've not seen a place around here that lets you recycle the plastic bags. That would be a great idea if people actually did it.

    SuziQ, I've had them stare and even some ugly remarks. I've even had my bags searched. I don't stop though. I get way more positive feedback than bad. And being part of a guerilla bagging group, I've been known to hand out bags when someone mentions they like them. It's part of the passing it on stance that Morsbags talks about.

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