Letters


Reduce Plastics Consumption

Published: January 31, 2018 at 12:00 am

Print

To the Editor:

Plastic is a miraculous material. It's strong, durable, and useful, but the benefits are a double-edged sword. Plastic is so strong and durable that it can take centuries to break down, and even when it does break down, it just becomes increasingly smaller pieces of plastic.

All of our discarded plastic clogs landfills or releases toxins when incinerated. Some of the plastic finds its way into the ocean, creating garbage patches the size of Texas, and being consumed by sea animals. When animals consume plastic, it takes up space in their stomachs, leading to starvation. Once the animal dies and decomposes, the plastic is left behind to be eaten by another animal. When the plastic breaks down into small enough pieces, it's consumed by plankton. It doesn't take a huge leap to see that if the animal at the base of the food chain is eating plastic, so are we.

What can we do to fix this problem? Recycling is a good option, but more important is reducing the amount we use in the first place. Most plastics degrade during the recycling process and therefore can only be successfully recycled once. Recycling only delays the trip to the landfill. Fifty percent of the plastic we use is single-use, so we use it once - often just for a few minutes - and then we throw it away. If we want to leave a world behind for our children that's at least as nice as the one we've enjoyed, it's imperative that we tackle the problem of plastic pollution.

It's easy to carry a reusable water bottle, reusable grocery bags, and carry your own cup to your favorite coffee shop. Reducing single-use plastics takes a little more thought, but it will be worth it the next time you take the garbage out and realize that the bag feels much lighter than usual.

Vanessa Villamil
11 Antler Pine Road, Sandy Hook         January 31, 2018

Change Text Size:

This Week's Poll

Newtown Cultural Arts Commission is presenting or coordinating on six weeks of special events. Which event are you looking forward to the most? (Visit our Features page for a full story with details about all of these events.)

“In The Bag” exhibition, on view to September 28
0% (0 votes)
The Lords of 52nd Street concert, September 14
0% (0 votes)
Newtown Arts Festival weekend, September 15-16
50% (1 vote)
“An Evening of the Arts,” September 15
50% (1 vote)
“The Fox on the Fairway” production by Town Players of Newtown, weekends September 21-October 13
0% (0 votes)
“The Main Street Replica Project,” launching September 25
0% (0 votes)
Someday Cinema Series screenings of “The Blues Brothers,” September 30
0% (0 votes)
Photography display “In Our Rearview Mirror” by Marleen Cafarelli, et al, October 1-30
0% (0 votes)
“Love, Laughter, and Rhubarb” with Tinky Weisblat, October 3
0% (0 votes)
Newtown Day, October 6
0% (0 votes)
The 3rd Annual Newtown-Sandy Hook Restaurant Week, October 8-14
0% (0 votes)
Basket weaving workshop with Tina Puckett, October 13
0% (0 votes)
“Courageous Conversations in A Complex World,” October 17
0% (0 votes)
Live at ETH: David Wax Museum concert, October 19
0% (0 votes)
The 2nd Annual Fall Carnival at Fairfield Hills, October 19-21
0% (0 votes)
Connecticut Author’s Reading Series, October 21
0% (0 votes)
Natalie’s Open Mic, October 21
0% (0 votes)
“The Wordsmiths,” October 24
0% (0 votes)
Pianist Konstanza Chernov, October 28
0% (0 votes)
Someday Cinema Series double feature screenings of “Bride of Frankenstein” and “The Beast with Five Fingers,” October 29
0% (0 votes)
Total votes: 2