As kids get antsy and teachers count down the days, it’s clear that summer is on the horizon. When many people think of summer they picture the beach… but something you may not be thinking of is beach litter.
Did you know that cotton swabs, such as Q-tips, were one of the top 10 forms of beach litter in the UK between the years of 2015 and 2018? They end up on the beach when they are flushed down the toilet instead of thrown away in the trash. The plastic stems can harm wildlife when they are accidentally ingested; and they frequently end up in stomachs of seabirds. Over time when the swabs break down they contribute to the problem of microplastic pollution as well.
So the first step is to properly dispose of cotton swabs/buds (in the trash can)…but even so, when they are made of plastic and sent to landfills, we still have a microplastics and waste problem that lasts for around 500 years. So exercise your purchasing power and be sure to buy biodegradable cotton swabs and buds.
The Cotton Bud Project focuses on working with companies in order to phase out making their cotton swabs with plastic stems and replace them with biodegradable ones instead. Their hope is that by focusing on one small single use plastic item they can demonstrate to the industry that change is possible for this problem as well as other plastic problems.
If you haven’t made the switch yet, check out these options of biodegradable cotton swabs to find a good brand for you:
There is so much work to do to heal our planet that it can feel overwhelming to determine where to start. That’s why 7th Generation Advisors launched the Personal Climate Action Center, a new initiative designed to encourage people to take individual action against climate change.
At 7th Generation Advisors we
are diligently working with scientists, policymakers, activists and
clean tech companies to create a clean energy economy for all, to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions, and to protect all living things seven
generations into the future. We care about the future of our planet.
Will you join us?