Thanks to heart-breaking photos of turtles with straws stuck on them and mounds of garbage in our oceans, companies across North America have vowed to get rid of their plastic straws and become more environmentally friendly.
Starbucks was one of the biggest names to jump on board when they announced they would get rid of all plastic straws by the year 2020. But while ditching straws is trendy right now, it doesn't solve 99.97% of the problem.
As it turns out, plastic straws only make up 0.03% of the garbage in our oceans and aren't even on the top 5 list of most harmful pieces of litter. What is actually harming the turtles and other sea creatures is plastic from fishing nets, which accounts for 46% of plastic in the ocean making it the most common polluter.
So according to Bloomberg, skipping out on plastic straws the next time you go to Starbucks won't make much of a difference.
While a lot of people were surprised to hear this, that doesn't mean companies should just go back to plastic. However small, 0.03% is still an amount of unnecessary plastic polluting waters and it is still good on the part of Starbucks and others to take steps to reduce that number.
As for the real culprits, the fishing nets, fishing companies are being asked to brand or mark their nets so that any company caught polluting can be held accountable.
This foreal shook me but .03% is still a shit ton of plastic so I'm going to continue using my reusable straw and trying to convince others to do the same.— Obtuse Honey (@FrostedKat) 18 July 2018
Among other top worst types of litter are cigarette butts, plastic bags, food wrappers, food, and plastic bottles.