Plastic-Free to Save our Sea
What if the ocean had more plastic than fish?
It sounds crazy – but scientists predict it may happen by 2050. Plastic is found in almost all of the Earth’s waters – its rivers, lakes, and especially the ocean, threatening marine animals.
But we can stop the tide.
- Ocean wildlife such as fish, seals, sea lions, otters, seabirds and whales are harmed by plastics when they become entangled. Nearly 700 species have been documented encountering plastic.
- Many marine animals mistake plastic ocean trash for food, nibbling on it or ingesting it entirely. It’s estimated that 90% of seabirds eat plastic, many feeding it to their chicks which may die from lack of nutrition – despite a full stomach.
- Toxic microplastics are ingested by invertebrate larvae and fish and are concentrated as these creatures are eaten by other animals up the food web – including seals, sea birds, and orcas. These “poison pills” may contain 1 million times the concentration of PCBs compared to the surrounding water.
- The implications to human health of microplastics being contained in the food we eat is still unknown.
- Avoid buying single-use plastic whenever possible.
- Avoid individually wrapped items such as snack packs and single-serve containers. Buy items in bulk when possible.
- Fill a reusable bottle instead of buying bottled water. (You can find water bottle filling stations throughout the Zoo!)
- Use your reusable bag and containers when shopping, traveling, or packing lunches.
- Ask restaurant servers to ‘skip the straw, please.’
- Bring your own container for leftovers when dining out.
- Support proposed bans on single-use plastic bags, like Tacoma’s.
- Organize clean-up efforts in your community.
- Start a workplace effort to reduce plastic.
- Spark a conversation on social media.