The fourth Friday in February is National Skip the Straw Day! Did you celebrate straw free this weekend? If not, it’s not too late to start!
Did you know that Americans use 500 million drinking straws every day? The National Park Service estimates that Americans use an average of 1.6 straws per person per day. With the average human lifespan around 78 years, this equates to more than 45k straws per person. According to The Sea Turtle Conservancy, the world’s oldest sea turtle research and conservation group, “Over 100 million marine animals are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean.”
If that’s not enough of a reason, conservative estimates say that there is over a 100 million tons of plastic in the world’s oceans, which is set to increase by 60 billion pounds this year. To put it in perspective, in some ocean areas the buildup of plastics is estimated to span 5 million square miles, the equivalent of the area of the U.S. plus India.
How can you skip the straw?
First, join the “Be Straw Free” campaign today, which connects members of the food and beverage industry, businesses, schools, environmental groups, and concerned citizens, and gives them a platform to advocate for smarter straw usage and waste reduction. Click here to take the pledge to be straw free.
Second, get in the habit of saying “no” to plastic straws. This includes plastic stir sticks, as well as straws handed out automatically at restaurants.
What to use instead?
For most of us, the easiest way to be straw free is to sip from your glass, or reusable cup. But if you need a straw, there are other fun, eco-friendly options. See this list below:
- Bamboo straws
- Paper straws
- Glass straws
- Stainless steel straws – great option for those of us who like our cold drinks really cold!
Have an idea on how we can all Be Straw Free? Share your solutions below and use #SkipTheStraw on social media.
Lead photo by demondimum