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Coastal Blog — Rise Above Plastics

Don’t Mess with Texas - Kermit Bans Plastic Bags

July 30 2013

Don’t Mess with Texas - Kermit Bans Plastic Bags

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Surfrider Chapters typically focus their plastic reduction efforts in coastal cities and towns because that's where our members are who see the impacts of plastic pollution firsthand and want to take action. You have to start somewhere and as a grassroots organization, that somewhere is our backyard. It's also great…

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More Evidence of Plastic in the Food Web

July 24 2013

More Evidence of Plastic in the Food Web

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

In the past few years there have been numerous studies and necropsies documenting ingested plastic in fish species that people eat. The latest study from the University of Hawaii focused on large predatory fish from offshore waters around Hawaii over a six-year period. Ten species were investigated and seven of…

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Keep The Sea Plastic-Free

July 23 2013

Keep The Sea Plastic-Free

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

It's summertime and the beaches are packed with people - and their stuff. On the way to the water today with surfboard in hand I came across a ziplock bag filled with cookies along the tide line. I'm not sure which family it belonged to so I just tossed it…

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Summer Target: Foam Coolers

July 03 2013

Summer Target: Foam Coolers

Rise Above Plastics Expanded Polystyrene Foam

One great way to help reduce plastic pollution on Independence Day and all summer long is to avoid buying one of those cheap polystyrene coolers. They are not durable, typically don't carry much and are a nightmare to cleanup once they break into small pieces. If you are reading this,…

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It’s Official, LA Mayor Signs Plastic Bag Bag Into Law!

June 26 2013

It’s Official, LA Mayor Signs Plastic Bag Bag Into Law!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa cemented his stellar environmental record by signing the plastic checkout bag ban into law. City Council has been working on the issue for ten years and finally passed an ordinance this year that will make LA the largest city in the U.S. to take meaningful…

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Pledge to Take Back The Tap and Rise Above Plastics!

June 24 2013

Pledge to Take Back The Tap and Rise Above Plastics!

Rise Above Plastics

Summer's here and it's time to hit the beach! How you pack is going to determine how much waste you create so it's best when you choose to reuse. 'Pack In Pack Out' is a mantra seemingly lost in today's age and beach cleanups often collect lots of single-use/disposable and/or…

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Job Killer or Job Creator?

June 20 2013

Job Killer or Job Creator?

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

People don't make plastic bags, machines do. I know that it takes people to run and maintain the machines then package the bags to be shipped but it is a highly automated process. On the other hand, people do make reusable bags. Quality reusable bags are stitched one at a…

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Surfrider Activists Stand Up To Fight Plastic Pollution in LA and Chicago

June 19 2013

Surfrider Activists Stand Up To Fight Plastic Pollution in LA and Chicago

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Tuesday was a big day for plastic bag reductions in two of the largest U.S. cities, Los Angeles and Chicago. The City of LA is very close to finalizing a plastic checkout bag ban they have been discussing for ten years while there are positive signs out of Chicago as…

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Mana Kai Film Series

June 14 2013

Mana Kai Film Series

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

MANA KAI (means 'Spirit of the Ocean' in Hawaiian Language) is a short film created by Surfrider activist Pasha Reshikov exploring the relationship of humans and the ocean, touching on the spirit of the oceans and their response to human pollution. Mana Kai is told through the story of a…

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Chicago Plastic Bag Recycling Falls Short

June 13 2013

Chicago Plastic Bag Recycling Falls Short

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

In 2009 a citywide ordinance for Chicago was implemented to help increase plastic bag recycling but a recent report shows that the program has not been successful. The ordinance called for recycling messaging on plastic checkout bags, recycling bins in every store, to recycle or reuse the bags, and to…

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Bag Ban Closing Arguments

June 11 2013

Bag Ban Closing Arguments

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

In late May a plastic bag ban bill failed to advance out of the California State Senate by three votes. As in years past, there was a heated debate on the floor. The legislators opposing the bill used the same old arguments while SB 405 author Senator Alex Padilla made…

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How Many Plastic Bags Does It Take To Kill A Dolphin?  4.

June 06 2013

How Many Plastic Bags Does It Take To Kill A Dolphin?  4.

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

A disturbing story was recently reported in New York where a "dolphin had swallowed four plastic bags and it starved to death because the bags disrupted its digestive process." Plastic bag reduction opponents often claim that impacts to wildlife are overblown. The reality is that it's tough to get solid…

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China Leads the Way. Or Does It?

June 06 2013

China Leads the Way. Or Does It?

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

Reducing plastic pollution is a global priority as the ocean is turning into a plastic soup. Many people see reducing plastic checkout bags as a great first step. While there are over a hundred local checkout bag ordinances in the U.S., no state government has acted yet to reduce plastic…

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Worldwide Beach Litter Stats - Plastics Lead The List

May 22 2013

Worldwide Beach Litter Stats - Plastics Lead The List

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

The Ocean Conservancy recently released the totals from last years' worldwide Coastal Cleanup Day (CCD) and each of the top seven items picked up are typically made from plastic. CCD provides a one day snapshot of beach litter with over half a million volunteers picking up over ten million pounds…

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Bag Ban Legislative Season Heats Up!

May 13 2013

Bag Ban Legislative Season Heats Up!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

As the legislative season heats up in areas around the country, there is an increase in plastics related legislation. "The largest single subject of all these bills at the state level is plastic bags. Thirty-five plus bills would either ban plastic bags or put taxes on them or require their…

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Watershed Adventures Of A Water Bottle

April 29 2013

Watershed Adventures Of A Water Bottle

Rise Above Plastics

Check out this great children's book that was recently published to help raise awareness about the impacts of plastic pollution and how kids can help prevent it. Jennifer Chambers does a nice job of telling a story that is compelling and interesting while the artwork from Jesse Auth illustrates the…

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What Does a Plastic Packaging Bill Look Like?

April 29 2013

What Does a Plastic Packaging Bill Look Like?

Legal Rise Above Plastics

The enormity of the plastic pollution problem in our oceans is staggering. Surfrider Foundation has been hard at work advocating for local bag bans, polystyrene foam foodware bans and regulations of cigarette butts, amongst other efforts. But what else can we do to make sure we are targeting other forms…

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With Us - NYC Expands Recycling!

April 25 2013

With Us - NYC Expands Recycling!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

On Wednesday, Mayor Bloomberg hosted a press conference to announce that New York City is expanding its household recycling program to include all rigid plastics, not just #1 or #2 bottles and jugs. This will be a great opportunity to divert materials from the landfill and provide more recycled source…

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Down Cycled to Marine Debris

April 15 2013

Down Cycled to Marine Debris

Rise Above Plastics

Plastics manufacturers tend to promote recycling as the holy grail for waste management. As more cities aim to divert more materials from landfills for good reason, more recycled material gets processed and needs to find a second life. Some materials can be made directly into the same products they came…

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Rethink Butts

April 10 2013

Rethink Butts

Rise Above Plastics

The Surfrider Foundation has been fighting cigarette but litter since the 1990's when the San Diego County Chapter mobilized activists with their 'Hold On To Your Butt' campaign to end cigarette butt litter. Since then there has been great progress in some areas but cigarette butts continue to be a…

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