Plastic Pollution, Bag Bans
August 08 2011

Can you help stop plastic pollution?

by Bill Hickman

The Surfrider Foundation recently released the 'Rise Above Plastics Activist Toolkit' to help Surfrider Foundation Chapters and everyday activists plan plastic reduction initiatives at home, work and in your community.  It's a great resource guide that provides insight on the dangers of plastic pollution and how one person can help make a difference.  There are suggestions for education and outreach but most importantly, a step-by-step guide to establishing a plastic bag ban or similar ordinance in your community.

The first steps to plastic litter reduction are education and outreach.  Start with leading by example and remembering your reusable bottle and bags at every opportunity.  Talk to your friends and family about why marine debris is so deadly and how 80% of it comes from land based sources.  We all live in a watershed.  Get involved with your local Surfrider Foundation Chapter.  Most of them have a 'Rise Above Plastics' committee where you can help with with things like education presentations, info tables, 'Bag It' film screenings or other local projects.

When education and outreach can't solve your local issues, sometimes legislation is needed to protect the coastal and marine environment.  It's been proven many times that one person can provide the spark for monumental change.  This toolkit is intended to take your spark and help plan out a campaign to win your local plastic bag, foam or other initiative.  The Rise Above Plastics Activist Toolkit provides detailed info and resources on various steps from coalition building and working with the decision makers to building community support and rockin' the vote.  Check it out and get involved!

RAP Activist Toolkit E-mag version to View

RAP Activist Toolkit PDF version to Print