Article: Woah! Seattle Kept 2 Million Plastic Straws Out of the Ocean in 1 Month

Actor and environmentalist Adrian Grenier created a campaign called Strawless in Seattle to eliminate the use of straws. Seattle participated in it, and in September alone, “over 2 million plastic straws were eliminated from the city.” Seattle citizens, 150+ Seattle business, restaurants, and venues participated in it to help reduce the amount of trash from plastic straws.

Article: Woah! Seattle Kept 2 Million Plastic Straws Out of the Ocean in 1 Month – Here’s How

Since plastic straws are one of the smallest single-use items that we throw away (Americans use over 500 million plastic straws every day), it causes large amount of trash. By convincing people to limit their use of single-use plastics, it would decrease the rate of trash produced. So start going straw-less.

Three Groups Cleaning up Their Communities and Parks

The power of volunteering (during an event or during free hours) can make a huge difference in a community, especially in picking up trash. Below are three articles that describe the positive effect of picking up trash on both a environmentally and community level.

Article 1: First Dash for Trash in Ardmore is a clean sweep

A group of 140 individuals in Ardmore got together to pick up trash in a two-hour span. Towards the end, awards for different categories were given to teams who participate, like “most interesting piece of trash” and “most valuable piece of trash.” For their first annual trash pick-up, the teams managed to make their community cleaner, while still enjoy the experience.

Article 2: Lady Longhorns donate time to better their community

The United volleyball, Keep Laredo Beautiful, and the Longhorns’ volleyball programs teamed up together to clean up the Bartlett Park Soccer Complex on a Sunday. They laid out gravel pathways, planted plants, and picked up trash under four hours. Committing time and effort to make Laredo beautiful for generations to come, while having volunteers learn to give back to the community and respect the environment.

Article 3: Volunteers collect 3,000 pounds of trash on Coastal Cleanup Day

Over 700 volunteers picked up more than 3,000 pounds of trash from the 261 miles of land they covered in under 3 hours. Seventeen sites across the Erie County were cleaned up under that time. The program that they volunteered for is called Lake Erie International Coastal Cleanup, which has been going on for fifteen years.

After reading those articles, what can YOU do for your community to make it cleaner?

 

 

Trash Picking during a Run with my Running Buddy

A few days before I left to Houghton, MI to continue my studies in mechanical engineering, I ran with a good friend of mine whom I made while in my high school cross country team. He and I ran about six miles, and during the run, I picked 34 pieces of trash (image below of the trash). The first few pieces of trash between miles 1 and 2.5 didn’t take up much space, but from there, I encountered many more pieces of trash to the point where I couldn’t pick up any more.

For only six miles, this is the most amount of trash that I have picked up so far in a run.

Article: Austin woman’s trashy Instagram captures spirit of ‘don’t mess with Texas’

Have you ever seen an Instagram full of trashy photos? I mean, actual photos of trash that someone has picked up during their walk/hike/run? What started out as casually picking up pieces of trash during walks, turned into a mission of picking up trash for 365 days. Julie Sondecker uses her Instagram to post pictures of her trash finding to encourage people to take part in picking up trash when they go for a walk.

For more information about Julie’s action, visit this link: Austin Woman’s Trashy Instagram Captures Spriti of ‘Don’t Mess with Texas’

Picked up Trash during the Rocky Mountain Half-Marathon

On August 12th, I got to run the Rocky Mountain Half-Marathon in Estes Park, Colorado while visiting my grandma and aunt. What makes this half marathon different from the other half marathon races I ran is that it is cup free; instead of using plastic cups of water or power drink to give to runners, each runner get to fill their own Hydropouch (that is provided with the registration) to fill up on water or a power drink, like in this image.

They want to promote on being green and not worry about trash being left in the park. I figured why not run with one of my prototype bags incase there is trash along the way. And sure enough, I found 4 pieces of trash and another Hydropouch between miles 5 and 9. I felt proud of picking them up and completing the race at 2:19:23 (which isn’t my personal record, but still felt proud). You can see the trash below, along with scenic photos I took during the race.