The Save Our Saltie Soul #SOSS initiative was created to help create awareness for the devastation incorrect plastic disposal is having to our Oceans and help educate friends on the small changes we can all embrace that could potentially make a big difference to the ocean environment.
Every minute one garbage truck of plastic is dumped into our oceans, that equates to around eight million metric tons of plastic waste invading our oceans every year. According to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration plastic debris kills an estimated 100,000 marine mammals per year, as well as millions of birds and fishes. Studies show that plastic waste ends up in the stomachs of more than half of the world’s sea turtles and nearly all marine birds, a study from Plymouth University, plastic pollution affects at least 700 marine species.
When plastics end up in the ocean, they become a sponge for chemicals that are already out there, most are not just floating on the surface, but are broken down into microplastic particles. These microplastics become coated in bacteria and algae, resulting in fish mistaking them for food. While most of the actual plastic bits end up in the guts of the fish, it is believed that once the plastic interacts with the fish’s stomach, chemicals are released and transferred into the bloodstream and flesh; thus edible parts of the fish that end up on our plates.
According to reports, if we keep producing (and failing to properly dispose of) plastic at predicted rates, plastic in the ocean will outweigh fish by 2050. The World Economic Forum has reported that the worldwide uses of plastic has increased 20-fold in the past 50 years, and is expected to double again in the next 20 years. By 2050, we’ll be producing more than three times as much plastic as we did in 2014. Reports show that most plastic packaging is only used once; and we are disposing of $80 billion-$120 billion worth of plastic per year.
LEADING BY EXAMPLE
How Saltie Soul Is Leading The Way In Plastic Reduction
At Saltie Soul we have created our own strict in-house process for deciding the most suitable packaging for each product that has the least negative impact on the environment, you can read more about this here. By dedicating a sizeable amount of resources to researching the most eco-friendly packaging options, implementing a strict packaging vetting system and applying the principles of the plastic economy, we believe that although we are a small Australian company we can make a BIG difference and proudly become an example of which other businesses can follow. We have taken strides to applying the principles of the "New Plastic Economy" to our packaging by;
working to eliminate all unnecessary and problematic single-use plastic packaging through redesign and innovation, and
ensuring all plastic packaging is reusable, recyclable, or biodegradable.
What Is "The New Plastic Economy"
The New Plastics Economy, is rethinking and redesigning the future of plastics to build momentum towards a plastic system that works. Plastics are fundamental to industry and everyday life, however they are one of the most wasteful examples of our existing linear, ‘take-make-dispose’ economy. The ambitious three-year initiative provides a vision of a global economy in which plastics never become waste, and outlines the concrete steps towards achieving a systemic shift from a linear to a circular plastic economy.
HOW WE CAN ALL HELP
The overuse of plastic is having a devastating effect on our oceans, everyone needs to come together to change our mindsets on how we use plastic, we all need to do our part to dispose of plastic correctly and re-use where we can.
No Waste - Always upcycle plastic containers where possible and recycle all unwanted plastics.
Reduce Single-use Plastics - Replace single use plastics with reusable items to help reduce recycling and landfill waste.
Avoid Microbeads - Although most countries have banned the use of microbeads in personal care and cosmetic products you should still be on the look out for offenders, don't use products that contain microbeads.
Pick It Up - Take a bag with you on your beach walk or trip out to sea and pick up any plastics, every little helps. Alternatively participate in your local beach clean up days.
Knowledge Is Power - Spread the word on plastic pollution and stay up to date with the latest initiatives. Inform others of the environment impact of plastic pollution and help make a change.
Donate & Support - Many non-profit organizations are working to tackle the problem of ocean plastic pollution, these organisations rely on donations to continue their important work, even a small donation can make a big difference.
The New Plastics Economy Rethinking the future of plastics - World Economic Forum - January 2016.
By 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans, study says - Washington Post - Jan 2016
Ocean Crusaders - Plastic Aint So Fantastic - http://oceancrusaders.org
One Green Planet - http://www.onegreenplanet.org
Plastic pollution and the planet - Plymouth University - Professor Richard Thompson - December 2017
Marine Life Defenseless Against Microplastics - natural word news - July 2014