The Beginning of a Journey
This story begins with a horrifying image. An image of a dead albatross chick stripped to where you could clearly see its stomach contents: small plastic products we use every day. You may have seen this before, but the first time you see the amount of plastic, disposable plastic these birds have consumed mistaken for food and died because of it, you will never forget. This plastic lasts forever to kill and kill again.
Beth Terry will never forget it and it changed her life.
This story begins with one woman’s mission to change her life, change the world, by learning, teaching, blogging, and living without plastic. The story culminates, for now, with a book, Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too. Beth is an inspiration for all of us who seek to advocate change by living our ideals and now her book can inspire all who read it.
The Book: Plastic-Free
Those of you have read this blog for any amount of time know that bottled water, particularly the proposed Nestlé water bottling plant here in Oregon, is an issue I am deeply concerned about. as you can imagine, single use plastic water bottles are an issue for Beth as well.
“After giving up disposable plastic shopping bags, I decided that my next step would be to quit buying bottled water… I didn’t realize then how important this step would be. In the past few years, I’ve learned that the environmental impact from bottled water is about more than just the plastic bottle. But back then, it just seemed like an easy way to reduce my consumption of new plastic. The biggest challenge was remembering to bring my bottle.” Excerpted from Chapter 3 of Plastic-Free.
Beth delves into the myths bottled water companies would like for you to believe, but it is the last that strikes at the heart of the matter for me.
“Myth #4: Bottled Water Doesn’t Compete with Tap Water
Fact: Reliance on bottled water companies undermines our public water infrastructure. The International Bottled Water Association denies that bottled water competes with tap water (see citation in book). But the truth is when we divert money to bottled water corporations such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Nestlé, we spend less on the public water infrastructures that ensure all citizens have access to cheap, clean drinking water. Safe drinking water is a right that shouldn’t be reserved for those who can afford to buy bottled water. The organization Food & Water Watch is asking congress to establish a clean water trust fund to upgrade our public water systems. And in a recent survey, the organization found that 63 percent of U.S. voters favored funding the program with a one-cent per ounce tax on manufacturers of bottled water. Since many brands of bottled water actually come from municipal sources (despite the pictures on the label), I think such a tax would be a great way to transfer some of those profits back to communities where the water came from to begin with!” Excerpted from Chapter 3 of Plastic-Free.
I wholeheartedly agree. Beth goes on in the rest of that chapter to give wonderful suggestions for those who are ready to ditch the disposables and move away from bottled water. Practical steps for anyone ready to make one change…
Read the Book
There is so much information in this book (resources, suggestions, tips, anecdotes), all of which is incredibly accessible, that I really encourage you to all give it a read. It will change your perspective. You may not go plastic-free, but the next time you reach for that plastic produce bag, disposable water bottle, or plastic straw, maybe you will think twice. And you know what? That is how we change the world.
This physical book is so special (besides the content of course) is because it was created with plastic-free principles. Skyhorse Publishing Company produced Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too without any plastic materials, including plastic glue, coatings, or even synthetic thread! It is even compostable once it reaches the end of its life. Ordering from BuyGreen ensures it will also ship with no plastic packaging. The book is also available for Kindle and NOOK.
Win the Book
There are many other wonderful green bloggers who are participating in the Plastic-free Blog Tour and I encourage you to check them all out. Find reviews, interviews, and other excerpts…