Ask any informed teenager where they would prefer to dine, and the likely answer would be, “anywhere that does not use plastic straws.” Future generations are far more in touch with environmental issues, and the impending synthetic catastrophes that are contriving to destroy our beautiful blue planet, the only one we have.
It is a sobering thought, but until recently the main warriors supporting the struggle against the issuing of plastic straws came from committed environmentalists. These green campaigners have fought hard against single-use plastics that continue to cause catastrophic pollution in far-flung areas across our globe.
The Proliferation Continues Unabated
The ubiquitous, non-biodegradable make-up of plastic straws renders them anti-social and unsuitable in recycling terms. Considering they arrived acceptably in social circles in the mid-50s should have consigned them to unwanted junk status by now. No surprise then that recycling plants simply refuse to accept these unwanted fads from the past.
The Sheer Volume is Scary
It is hard to estimate, but a reasonable guesstimate calculates that in 2017, somewhere between 200-million to 500-million plastic straws accompanied meal and drink orders in the US each day. Straws seem part of the heritage in the US as they form part of everyday consumer culture. It has taken a long time for the message to filter through; plastic straws are a recycling nightmare and the truth needs to out.
Fitting then that this week’s UN Climate Action Summit witnessed an incredible backlash under anti-plastic banner protests right across the world. In the US, many restaurants, bars and coffee shops are committing to a replacement programme with plastic in mind. The list of changes includes replacing one-off plastic coffee cups and straws with recyclable paper versions.
Considering the subject surfaced at a recent Democratic debate over presidential nominees, contestants faced stern questions regarding national bans on plastic and its known pollutant potential.
President Trump played down the straw bans, which led to his launch of the bright-red plastic packaging under the banner “Make America Great Again…” This has already raised a reported profit of $800k for the political machine. The problem is that the plastic straw message is off the political agenda in some voters’ minds.
So where do neutrals stand in term of the plastic straw dilemma? Many agree that getting rid of single-use plastic is a vital step in preserving planet earth for the generations still to come. The other side of the coin reveals a number of us, particularly teenagers, could face devastation should no workable solution emerge with replacement strategies in mind, recyclable paper being the obvious choice.
What is Your Choice?
A lot depends on your response to the many startling images of the ocean floor bombarding social media platforms. If you are a teenager, you don’t need to ask for parental permission to declare plastic straws unacceptable and anti-social. Knowing that just talking about single-use plastic straw issues is precisely what the fossil-fuel industry wants us to engage in. It’s like a smoke screen designed to deflect us from harsh truth of plastic, and what it is doing to the only planet we have.
Social Media to the Rescue
Straw wars clearly indicates that consumer sentiment shifts at astonishing speed. As people around the world take in the frightening images of the irreversible damage to our rivers and oceans, they change sides and take up the cudgel to side with preserving our precious planet.
Ultimately, investors are mobilizing and aligning to movements promoting sound environmental and acceptable social governance surrounding the straw wars campaign. Expect matters to heat up as the oil lords go about preserving the status quo.