This past January when I was visiting one of the most beautiful places on earth, the Caribbean, I observed litter that upset me. Yes, I am obsessed with litter and clean water. Litter along waterways is unacceptable. The shock was that some local restaurants only served their food in Styrofoam boxes. The Styrofoam boxes were littering the street gutters and shoreline. I wanted no part of this Styrofoam disaster, and searched for food on real plates. Often they had to wash plates just for us.
Why does this upset me? Styrofoam breaks into tiny pieces and no one knows how long it will last in our oceans, maybe forever. Not good for sea life or ocean health. Styrofoam can be recycled, but it is very hard to find. Manufacturers of Styrofoam as well as Coca-Cola and plastic bottle industry should recycle the harmful products they produce, and we should all avoid Styrofoam and plastic bottles as much as possible.
The discouraging ocean pollution I saw this year in the Caribbean
Fifteen years ago when I was in the Dominican Republic and I was shocked by the piles of plastic waste standing on the streets. Since then I have been sorry to observe plastic waste in many other countries. It really bothers me when I see it in streams washing into the sea. In January 2015 my adventures took me to St. Kitts, Antigua, Dominica and St Luci in the Caribbean. The plastic bag waste seemed better, but the ubiquitous Styrofoam container use has become ridiculous . Instead of searching for good food it became, “Where can we eat on a real plate?” Most local food was served in Styrofoam boxes, even to sit down and eat inside a local restaurant. Styrofoam containers and plastic bottles fill the gutters and beaches. The Caribbean is without doubt one of the most beautiful places on our earth, but the waste and pollution they are sending into our oceans is unacceptable. An effort is made to pick up trash on tourist beaches and around cruise boat areas. I assume the tourist boards do know this behavior of trashing is not acceptable. Styrofoam breaks into tiny little pieces, it could survive for hundreds of years, and I can’t imagine the harm it does to sea life? How can the world community help them recycle, replace Styrofoam, and help protect our oceans? The World Bank? Rotary International? Coca-Cola? Plastic Bank? Ocean Conservancy?
Hope For the Future?
The Plastic Collected by The Plastic Bank, is Recycled into Social Plastic®. Please Ask Brands to Help Keep Plastic Out of the Oceans While Helping People in Need By Using Recycled Social Plastic®. http://plasticbank.org/
Our oceans are struggling. Ninety-three percent of the heat from global warming is entering and heating our oceans. This is making the oceans more acidic. I was sad to read that some cruise companies are still dumping poorly treated and raw sewage into our oceans.
On my recent Caribbean trip (not on a cruise) I was surprised by how the Caribbean economy survives on cruise boats visiting their shores, and how these mega 10 story boats fill the small harbors of these islands. Many of us that live in the northern latitudes need a break from the dark cold days of winter. With some research you can choose a cruise more friendly to the environment. Read below how you can have a more environmentally favorable cruise: