BeyondConsumerism

Providing tools and support to families, citizens, and activists to counter our consumerist culture and to create new social norms about how to have a high quality of life and a reduced ecological footprint.

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Bags

reusable bagNext shopping trip, bring a reusable bag or three along. It can be a backpack, string bag, canvas tote, or you could go for a colorful nylon number that balls up to the size of an egg and fits in your purse or pocket. Do your part to promote consciousness about bag waste while reducing your own contribution to the landfill.

Why It’s Important

Between 500 billion and 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed throughout the world each year.  An estimated 8 billion pounds of plastic bags, wraps, and sacks enter the waste stream every year in the U.S. alone.

The production of plastic bags requires petroleum. An estimated 12 million barrels of oil is required to support the annual consumption of plastic bags in the U.S. When tossed, plastic bags contaminate soil and waterways, and are among the most common debris found in coastal cleanups. Recently, scientists have found dramatic accumulations of microscopic plastic fibers in beach and seabed sediments, and in plankton filtered from seawater. One study found that plastic debris acts like a sponge for toxic chemicals, soaking up a million-fold greater concentration of such deadly compounds as PCBs and DDE (a breakdown product of DDT), than the surrounding seawater.

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