Plastic is now found in almost every marine habitat on Earth, and we’re producing more than we can sustainably manage. According to a 2016 study by the World Economic Forum, 32 percent of the 78 million tons of plastic packaging generated annually across the globe ends up in waterways and storm drains where it eventually flows into oceans. At that rate, environmentalists have suggested there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans by 2050.
To help educate consumers about the steps they can take to help stop the growth of plastic waste, a group of 19 U.S. aquariums have partnered to create the In Our Hands initiative. There are some simple ways to curb your daily plastic use, like bringing a reusable water bottle with you, taking a tote bag to the grocery store, and sipping from a reusable straw if you really need one at all.
Below you will find some great gear ideas to help you do your part in protecting our world’s marine life.
Klean Kanteen Straw: These stainless steel and food-grade silicone straws are perfect for sipping your smoothie or iced coffee on the go. When you’re finished, simply throw them in the dishwasher and if they are extra gunky, use the included natural palm fiber straw brush for easy cleaning.
Stanley Classic Vacuum Mug: My go-to mug for coffee runs as it will keep your brew hot for up to 9 hours. You can operate it with one hand so great for long road trips.
Hydro Flask Vacuum Water Bottle: Our house is filled with Hydro Flask water bottles of all sizes. I grab one whenever I head out the door each day whether it is to hike, head to the airport, or to hydrate myself through a monster deadline session. Note: they work great for beer and wine, too!
Patagonia Lightweight Black Hole Gear Tote: I’m obsessed with these gear totes and not only are the great for hauling your gear to and from the car, but they serve double duty as a grocery bag.
Patagonia Provisions Bee’s Wrap: Ditch the plastic wrap and baggies in favor of these reusable Bee’s Wraps made with organic cotton and beeswax. Simply wash them in cold water and gentle soap and when they have served their useful life, the wraps are 100% compostable.
Diva Cup: Sadly, the stuff we need when our monthly friend comes to visit adds to the amount of plastic pollution out there. This silicone cup offers an alternative that will give you protection for up to 12 hours a day, even overnight.
Sea to Summit Utensil Set: All those plastic knives, spoons, and forks you grab with your takeaway? Yep, those are clogging up our waterways more than ever. Why not have your own set of reusable utensils with you at all times instead. This small, lightweight aluminum set from Sea to Summit will do the trick — simply throw them in the dishwasher when you get home and when they have served their useful life, throw them in the recycle bin.