Plastic Trash 101

Plastic trash kills sea animals; turtles, whales, birds and fish. Very few people don’t know and a vanishingly small minority do not care. Some plastic trash is intentionally created micro particles added to products like toothpaste and soap, supposedly with the purpose of increasing the cleaning power of these products. Then the particles pass through sewage treatment and flow to the sea. Scent binders and antibacterial soaps are parallel effluents that follow this path and stress Earth's life support systems.

Plastic micro particles also result from solar disintegration. Both micro particle types look like plankton in oceans and lakes, where they collect pollution molecules. Animals that eat the plastic “plankton” absorb the pollution and pass clean plastic back into the water, where it collects a new load of pollution ions and is eaten again. A more efficient method of introducing pollution into human diet is difficult to imagine.

Will a single-use plastic artifact compost into a life supporting nutrient for the life cycle of Earth in a timely manner? A positive answer to this question is central to a Biodegradable Packaging and Litter Reduction Ordinance which flows from the logic of distributed human intelligence comparing the laws of physics to the laws of corporatism and then finding a sustainable cultural solution. Considering regulation of plastic pollution at the source, specifically, there is no place on Earth where requiring reusable shopping bags and eliminating point-of-sale styrofoam and styrene has hurt the economy.

The ordinance presented on this site remains the most inclusive example known to date, it is open source from beginning to end, use as much as possible. Every aspect of this example ordinance is already in use somewhere, without problems, use it with confidence as a basis for an initiative in any town or country.

Encouragement is gratis. New versions are appreciated.

Encorajamento é gratis. Novas versões são apreciados.


Compostable packaging and litter reduction, open source

The example Biodegradable Packaging and Litter Reduction Law is a meld of efforts spanning Earth's timespace from Nantucket, 1990, to Maui and Honolulu, 2014, followed by the State. The ordinance is an example that includes input from several towns in Massachusetts as-well-as multiple cities, counties and the State of California, and New York City, where styrofoam is no longer used much anymore.

Concord, Massachusetts has fired a second shot heard 'round the world — elimination of single use plastic drinking water bottles less than one Liter. Manhattan Beach, California and Maui, Hawaii, have banned cigarette smoking on the beach, and Manhattan Beach recently expanded beach protection to include no smoking in all public places.

Honolulu, the first city to explicitly require compostable shopping bags. Biodegradable has almost always been defined as compostable within the various laws and ordinances, prior to Honolulu. Now, Honolulu has made it crystal clear; biodegradable is not good enough ... Compostable is the modern criteria for single-use plastic. Honolulu is a Hawaiian tourist destination beyond measure, it is worthless covered in plastic trash. Tell it like it is, Mayor.

A voter initiative can easily embrace this interesting leadership, which includes the efforts of many surfers, hats off to surfers, and adds the spice of San Francisco. ¿Ready? If one insists on smoking tobacco despite all evidence it is a ridiculous form of suicide, then one must be within arm's reach of an ashtray. ¡Yes! You are free to carry a personal ashtray ... Save the San Francisco Bay!

The vast majority (~94%) of debris collected on California's coastal cleanup day is associated with smoking activities (cigarette butts, lighters) and with shoreline and recreational activities (food wrappers, containers, caps, lids, bags, straws, cups, bottles, etc.) read more here ...

Special appreciation goes to the Los Angeles based 5 Gyres Institute in collaboration with New York University for aquatic studies of the Great Lakes which motivated and enabled the coastal State of Illinois to ban plastic microbeads. Although the microbead ban phases in over two years, it instantly spurred corporate agreements to begin removing these extraordinarily harmful plastic bits from tooth paste, skin lotion and other products. Read the label ... If either polypropylene or polyethylene are listed, avoid it like the plague.

BOSTON (May 25, 2010) Tufts University — Longtime environmental health researchers at Tufts University School of Medicine describe the carcinogenic effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), ubiquitous chemicals that have hormone-like effects in the body. In a review article published online May 25 in Nature Reviews Endocrinology, the researchers express the need for more complex strategies for studying how these chemicals affect health but report that ample evidence already supports changing public health and environmental policies to protect the public from exposure to EDCs.

plastic water bottles.


It is well documented that many harmful chemicals concentrate on organic particles suspended in water and within marine sediments by adsorbing (adhering) to the particle’s surface. Recent studies now focus on the fact that plastic particles floating in the ocean also serve as concentrating and transport devices for environmental pollutants; some studies, in fact, indicate that plastics may be better concentrators than natural sediment. The United Nations Environment Program has declared plastic marine debris and its ability to transport harmful substances one of the main emerging issues in our global environment. The physical characteristics of the surface of plastic (hydrophobic, low polarity) attract many persistent organic pollutants (POPs)—polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and dichlorodiphenyl trichloroethane (DDTs), and other organichlorine pesticides—that share similar chemical properties ... micro-plastic pellets and fragments are serving as concentrating devices for pollutants, which raises toxicological concerns for marine organisms that commonly ingest micro-plastics. It is also important to note that these studies, through various experimental controls, were able to prove that plastic resin pellets were adsorbing the pollutants directly from the surrounding seawater (not the air or sediment).

source; Plastic Debris in the California Marine Ecosystem, 2011