Worried about plastic pollution

To the editor:

Plastic pollution is negatively impacting our oceans and wildlife. According to Ocean Conservancy, 8 million metric tons of plastic enter our oceans every year. I feel very strongly about this subject because according to a report sent to the Washington Post, if plastic continues to be produced at its current rate, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050. This is a scary thought: One day our children or grandchildren may live in a world where plastic in the ocean is more common than fish. We are already seeing the negative impacts of plastic pollution today: Many marine animals mistake plastics for food. Unfortunately, once they ingest the plastic, it takes approximately 450 years for it to decompose; these animals will constantly feel full and starve.

What we are doing to our oceans is unacceptable. All is not lost, however. But we need to start being proactive about conserving our natural assets. A good first step was New York state’s plastic bag ban which went into effect on March 1, 2020. If we can significantly reduce the use of plastics, we can start to heal our environment. I suggest that, as responsible citizens, we avoid single-use plastics: Please don’t use a plastic straw; use a refillable water bottle as opposed to a plastic one; and re-use recycled grocery bags. These are small, easy steps to help protect our planet and contribute to sustainability for generations to come.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sara McKillip

Lake Placid/Hoosick Falls