#StopSucking and ditch the straw

Plastic pollution is getting out of control. 

Everyone is talking about how the plastic straw is on its way out. Good riddance. You may not think it’s as huge of a deal as people are making it out to be, but it is definitely a step in the right direction. 

Let us not forget that much of this movement was started by a viral video of a sea turtle with a straw stuck in its nostril. The power of social media and collective outrage has pushed companies to make real change, even if it’s small. 

Warning: The following may be disturbing to some, and heartbreaking to most. Initially the team thought it was a worm, then discovered it was actually a plastic straw. 

Plastic is horrible for us. It literally never disappears.

You caught us, not “never”, but when we use enough plastic straws to wrap around the globe 2.5 times EVERY DAY, with each single use straw needing 200 years to biodegrade, we are essentially looking at an eternal plastic abyss. 

Some people have pointed out that while Starbucks may be ditching straws, they’re still using a lot of plastic on their lids. The difference though, is that these new lids are recyclable. Which is only progress if people *actually* recycle them, by the way. (Yes, subtle guilt trip intended.)

If you must have a straw, drop a couple bucks on a glass or metal set. There are also bendable silicone straws for people with disabilities who need adjustable straws, and Starbucks admittedly has a ways to go on this very important issue. We’ll keep you posted.  

Here are some big names that are currently ditching single-use plastic straws and other small plastic products: 

Starbucks, Disney, Bon Apetit, Hyatt, American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Marriott, Aramark, Royal Carribbean, Hilton, and Ikea are all among the first to make the change.

California, Hawaii, and certain beaches in New Jersey and Florida are also trying to eliminate plastic straw usage.  

Make your voice heard – tweet at your favorite companies using the #stopsucking campaign and ditch straws or other single-use plastics. 

You may feel like just a drop in the ocean, but believe me, our voices and actions add up. 
(But so does the plastic pollution, so for real, it’s time to get serious about this.)

A beach in India, via @plasticpollutes on Instagram

Need some easy tips for little changes you can make for a big impact? Check this out. 

Photo Lindsey Schad
Lindsey Schad
Head of Communication Team

No guilt trips, no sad stories. Just a chance to do something good.