Ghost of plastic bag past!

by

They invade our homes, lurk in our backyards, wander our streets, swim in our ocean, float down our rivers and streams, and find shelter amongst trees and bushes.  They are found in the most populated and the most remote places on Earth.  They need no resources to persist and may indeed outlive the human race.  We can’t ignore them, we can’t escape them and we can’t destroy them.

Lurking in your water...

In New Jersey, the beaches are the main attraction to not only tourists but also its local residents. However, some lurkers have been around making the beaches not so nice. The Annual Beach Sweep report stated that it collected almost 500,000 pieces of trash last year in New Jersey alone, most of it plastic. Surprisingly, plastic does not deteriorate, it simply breaks down into tons of tiny pieces and dangerous chemicals. These pieces are easily ingested by critters and can be found stuck on your wet,sandy feet. Pretty gross? Instead of waiting for the government to do something (really what Jersey person can wait for anything) the locals are standing up for what they love: The Jersey Shore!

What can you do? With the help of NJ Surfrider, the Asbury Park Boardwalk will attempt to decrease its plastic bag use by engaging local residents, store owners and visitors in its ‘Bag-Free Challenge’ campaign. The challenge’s goal is to get local residents and tourists to use unique ‘Asbury Park’ reusable bags on a regular basis. Stores will offer the reusable bags as an alternative and encourage buyers to keep using them. But as we all know, quitting cold-turkey can be tough. If you can’t seem to remember your reusable bags, here are few easy steps to becoming  plastic bag-free:

  1. Recycle: most grocery stores accept bags for recycling, if you keep them clean.
  2. Reuse: trash can liners, dog-poop pick up, donate to schools, beach bag, etc.
  3. Kick the plastic bag addiction: just don’t take one when you buy stuff. Double up when shopping, bring your own bags, patronize stores that encourage this activity like Costco and Ikea, and simply BE aware of the overuse of them.

Get Involved: Check out Surfriders website or follow them on twitter to join the campaign and find out about exciting events happening in and around Asbury Park and where to pick up YOUR bag! Are you ready to take the challenge?

B squared: Beautiful and Bag-free

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