Resolve to reduce plastic waste
It’s the time of year when people make resolutions to make improvements in their lives. Resolve to improve the environment. It might even be easier than other resolutions you’ll make. How about resolving to reduce the amount of plastics you use?
Plastic is everywhere. It’s used in disposable products as well as packaging, it’s difficult to recycle, and it requires natural resources to produce.
Understanding the life cycle of plastic can help you understand its total impact on the environment. Think about the products you use every day. Each stage of the life cycle for each piece of plastic—from raw materials to manufacturing, to disposal—requires resources like energy and water.
Since plastic is challenging to recycle, much of it ends up in landfills. In fact, it was the second largest component of the municipal solid waste to be sent to landfills in 2015—making up almost 19 percent of landfilled material.
Recycling plastic is difficult because not all recycling programs and facilities accept all plastic products, so you can’t just throw all plastics in the recycling bin. The numbered triangle on the bottom of that plastic bottle looks like a recycle symbol, but this does not necessarily mean it can be recycled. The number must match what is accepted by your local program.
Make plastic reduction part of your resolutions for 2019 and beyond. Check out the infographic “This New Year, Resolve to Use Less Plastic,” for tips to help you get started.
Take Care of Texas is a statewide campaign from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality that encourages all Texans to help keep our air and water clean, conserve water and energy, and reduce waste.
To learn more, visit TakeCareOfTexas.org. Pledge to do your part to Take Care of Texas, and we’ll mail you a Texas State Parks: Official Guide.