The Plastic Bottle Dilemma

My number one priority is the elimination of plastic bottle, especially water bottles.

Here is an interesting video that certainly makes the “point”.



8 Replies to “The Plastic Bottle Dilemma”

  1. Hi Catherine,

    Foremost, I love your design choice to feature mushrooms in your header. I have to admit, I’m more than a little mushroom obsessed, and I have a ridiculous amount of decor and clothing that feature them.

    I also think that it’s incredibly noble that you worked to establish a Green Initiatives Committee! I’d love to hear more about the work that you accomplished. It’s awesome to see how your passions for environmentalism and women & gender studies coalesce in this class and with this blog. The work that you do with this assignment could build a portfolio for your future endeavors!

    I, too, try to eliminate as much plastic use as possible. The governor of NJ recently passed a plastic bag ban, and we no longer have single-use plastic bags in any of our stores or plastic straws in our restaurants. At first, so many people were resistant and full of complaints, and I could never wrap my head around how such a seemingly insignificant change in one’s day could cause so much unrest. It’s truly not that difficult to drink from a plastic straw, or use your own reusable one. The same goes for the bags. Just bring a reusable shopping bag into the store with you, and your problems are solved!

    Fingers crossed that more people can become more environmentally conscious BEFORE it’s too late.

    Wishing you all the best,

  2. Hi Lizzy,
    I agree with your thoughts on eliminating plastic laundry detergent bottles. I did make the switch a while ago to powder in a cardboard “box” container.
    If you use a front loader machine…look out for undissolved detergent on your clothes :).
    Last week was the last week I told my family we are buying single serve snacks in a big cardboard box for school lunch….it takes more time to fill up some reusable plastic storage bins and reusable juice drink bottles but it’s worth it.

  3. Hi Catherine,

    I really liked the video you posted about recycling water bottles! Sadly this is an environmental issue I have seen from an earlier stage, and although it is an extremely important topic now, it was already a big problem over 45 years ago.

    I remember going to the beaches of Rio de Janeiro with my sister and her friends when I was a little girl, and they would challenge me to collect as much trash (plastic bags, water and glass bottes, styrofoam food containers, etc.) as I could to help keep the beaches clean. For every plastic grocery bag I filled with trash, I would get the equivalent of $0.50 today. Aa a child, spent most of our beach time walking around collecting trash. I did it for the coins and the fun of making new friends along the way. Looking back in retrospect, this was already an big problem half a century ago when the world was ignorant to the devastating consequences of plastic waste.

    Thank you so much for posting the video! It was very informative!

    I look forward to reading your future blog posts!

    Rose Costa

    1. Hi Rose,
      I am so impressed by your environmental activism and at a young age! I am fairly certain that being in my mid-sixties, I am quite a bit older than most of you :).
      Yes, I remember the days of driving in a car as a child (without a seatbelt) when people thought nothing of throwing litter out the window or leaving it “wherever” it was convenient. (cringe)…

      I often think about what the earth will be like when my young grandchildren are adults. One of them mentioned to me that the movie “Wall-e” (which I love) seems a lot like what people are talking about avoiding…..

  4. Hey Catherine!
    I think this is such an important topic to talk about. It’s insane how much plastic we use in our everyday lives. As simple as it is, the practice of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” is something I agree we should all try to practice. Plastic pollution is a big factor in the decline of our environment and I too hope that the current state of our world will help encourage others to try living more sustainably.

    I’m also working towards eliminating all plastic use in my house. Plastic bottles were the first thing to go and now we reuse water bottles. The next step I’m trying to take is switching the laundry detergent. It’s crazy how many of those plastic bottles end up in our oceans or other landfills. They take so long to decompose! I hope you have an easy time with convincing your family to make the switch. Much like Kylie said, sometimes making the change is not always easy because these things are hard to access and isn’t always affordable. I spend a lot of my free time trying to do research on affordable products that are environmentally friendly.

    Best of luck to you this semester! I look forward to reading more of your posts.

  5. Hi Catherine,
    It was a pleasure to read your opening blog post! I would first like to start by highlighting how important it is that we must protect the environment and understand how systems of oppression can then influence the exploitation of nature and as you have already demonstrated through your previous work with children, teaching the younger generation is important. Although it may have been years ago, I still remember all the environment initiatives that I volunteered in throughout my academic studies and how it shaped the way I think about the environment. The focus on “Reuse, Reduce, and Recycle” is a major goal that I think we can all benefit from. Personally, I try to follow these principles the best I can although it can be hard at times especially when it is not always affordable and accessible. I love that you included the video on plastic water bottles. It is great to bring awareness to this issue and ways that we can work to eliminate this. It even connects to the issue that I read about for my blog post on water pollution in my community. Although more closely related to nitrogen pollution, plastic debris is also a source of water pollution. I am a big fan of reusable water bottles and own several in efforts to eliminate my use of plastic!

    As far as enforcing environmental friendly responsibilities with your family, are there any specific practices that you do in your household? I am not sure where you are in your progress towards your degree, but if you are interested, there are some sustainability courses offered at UMass Dartmouth! Here’s a link if you wanted to look more into it:

    I look forward to reading your future blog posts!

    Kylie Coutinho

    1. Kylie,
      Thank you for sending me the link to UMASS classes on “Sustainability” etc. I honestly did not even think about trying to find classes in this category. I have a flexible Major and will definitely include some in my next semester’s enrollment…..

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