Ocean Clean Up Made Simple: Start From Home
Valentine’s flowers are starting to droop and the lovely wine and or chocolates are a sweet memory (unless you are really disciplined). The post-Valentine’s rush seems to be fading. With all that love and kindness thrown around I am enjoying the feel-good endorphins. I want to keep up the rush. I look out further. I picture myself starting to float. Propelled by the love in my heart. At first I can see my house, then my street; higher and higher where I can touch the stars, I look down at this beautiful green planet. This planet that houses 8 billion plus people and trillions more species be it animal, insect, ambhibian or plant based. And I see this magnificent planet hurting and crying. There in the Pacific Ocean, I spot a pile of floating garbage. It is twice the size of Texas. With all the advances and conveniences we have afforded ourselves as humans, we forgot to take a step back and ask, “Is this hurting anyone?“.
I have been following the Ocean cleanup now for a couple of years. Before then I knew the oceans were home to sea creatures as well as discarded items enjoyed by humans; however, I was stunned to find out the magnitude of it. There are multiple large patches of garbage and plastics across the oceans. If we continue this way, it it predicted that by 2050 the garbage will outweigh the sea creatures.
Why care? I am only one person. What impact can I make?
I have a kid who wants to be a marine biologist. My actions will directly impact what kind of a job he will have. If this CEO was 18 when he came up with this idea to clean the ocean, why can’t I have an impact? He too was just one person. A movement always starts with one person. So if I tell my kids they can change the world one decision at a time, I too can follow that.
So I make choices from a place of love for the planet. Choices about what to buy and what not to. I am not perfect, I have a ways to go but some of the ways I help keep plastic out of landfills and waterways include:
- Packing litterless lunches with reusable containers and cutlery for the kids and myself
- Saying no to straws
- Using re-usable water bottles and travel mugs
- I stopped using storebought facial wash with microbeads in it.
- Using reusable bags at the grocery store
Areas that I want to improve on:
- Avoid prepackaged food. Yes there is convenience to that pre-sliced pineapple or the 3 peppers in a bag…..peppers are naturally plastic free, why the extra plastic?
- Using re-usable produce bags. There is an irony to packing my re-usable bags full of produce that are themselves in smaller plastic bags. Thankfully a Google search has just shown me a plethora of places to get these reusable mesh bags.
- Napkins, maybe not plastic but something I am working on replacing too since much of this seems to be around food.
I love the ocean, I love lakes, I love ponds, rivers, waterfalls and streams. Water is grounding for me. It gives me so much to feed and repair my soul. So I dare say, for something that gives me gifts and hydration and life daily, a few simple and mindful changes are worth it and can have a brilliant ripple effect.