Plastic Reduction Resources

Here are some helpful videos, links to articles related to the plastic problem and what to do about it, and first-person stories on source reduction efforts.

If you have a personal story to tell about how you are working to address the problem with plastic, send it in (preferrably with photos) to

Helpful videos

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

NBC news reports on one of the molst little known, but greatest environmental catastrophes in the world today.

What really happens to the plastic you throw away?

In this animated video, Emma Bryce traces the life cycles of three different plastic bottles, shedding light on the dangers these disposables present to our world.

The Plastic Ocean

A heartwrenching (and at times disturbing) video from the United Nations on the amount of plastic in the ocean.

How Much Plastic is in the Ocean?

A PBS video on what can you do to make the oceans plastic-free.

The Battle of the Bag

A CBC documentary on international efforts to prohibit plastic bags.

The Story of Bottled water The Story of Bottled Water

From The Story of Stuff Project, an illustrative animated video on bottled water and how to avaoid buying it.

The Plastic Gyre

A Special Edition series for GSU TV exploring the perils of plastic pollution and the great plastic garbage patch in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

Takeout Takes a Lot of Trash

Takeout food generates an enormous amount of single-use wate, but it doesn't have to.


Articles and Websites

The Plastic Pollution Coalition

The Plastic Pollution Coalition is a growing global alliance of individuals, organizations, businesses, and policymakers working toward a world free of plastic pollution.

Oceans Are Drowning In Plastic The Oceans are Drowning in Plastic and No One's Paying Attention

A good overall article from the Huffington Post on how we are being overwhelmed by our waste.

Re-using Plastic Bags

Wonderful and totally do-able. Simple guidelines with pictures on easy ways to wash, dry, and store used plastic bags.

Plastic Pollution Is Killing Coral Reefs, 4-Year Study Finds

A sobering new study shows that reefs in four countries, Australia, Thailand, Indonesia and Myanmar are heavily contaminated with plastic that is killng them.

How Plastic Got Started

Originally invented in the 19th century as a replacement for raw substances like ivory, rubber, and shellac, plastic was conceived to cut manufacturers free from one of the greatest obstacles in industrial production: the limits of nature.

Earth911 Recycling Guide

The best way to recycle packing peanuts, plastic bags, cap & lids, jugs & bottles and plastic wrap & film: Earth911 Recycling Guide (click on Plastic)


User Success Stories

PNW February 2016 Newsletter One Piece at a Time

Karuna details how folks in Seattle have dealt with the seeming indestructibility of plastic.

Reusing grocery bags Reusing Grocery Bags

Beth Adler has committed to bringing her own, reusable grocery bags to the store

Buying Less Plastic - Part 1 Dishsoap

An average family without a dish washer could go through at least a bottle of Eco dish detergent a month. Vandita Smith details how you can make your own dish soap and never have to buy a plastic bottle of it again.

Buying Less Plastic - Part 2 Multipurpose Cleaner

Vandita Smith explains how to make homemade Multi-Purpose Cleaner that is incredibly cheap to make and very effective. This article shows how much the average family spends in N. America. It’s a surprising amount.

Buying Less Plastic - Part 3 Laundry Detergent

By making our own recipes instead of buying commercial detergent products, we reduce the burden of harmful chemicals on the environment, along with reducing purchase of single use plastics. As we change our habits, we influence others. Vandita Smith explains how you can make your own laundry detergent.

Buying Less Plastic - Part 4
Buying Less Plastic - Part 4 Hand Sanitizer

Overuse of antibacterial ingredients - like triclosan - is helping create superbugs. Our increasing obsession with avoiding germs could actually be making us sick. Softeners are also designed to stay in clothes and not fully rinse out, which means lingering chemicals come into contact with skin. Vandita Smith shows how you can make your own eco hand sanitizer .

Reusing Plastic Bags to Create Sleeping Mats for the Homeless

This article shows how to reuse plastic bags to create plastic sleeping mats for the homeless. The mats are made out of PLARN (Plastic Bag Yarn).

We've Got the Health of the World In Our Hands

A musical rendition of how we've got to reduce and replace by MA Center DC's Amrita Bala Kendra.

Pacific Northwest Tackles Plastic Source Reduction

The 3 Step Plastic Challenge is now underway and the Northwest Region is off to a rockin' start! Read about an effort for a statewide beach clean-up on March 24, focusing on plastic cleanup at Nye Beach in Newport,OR.

World's First Plastic-Free Aisle Opens in Supermarket

A Guardian investigation revealed that UK supermarkets were a major source of plastic waste, producing 1m tons a year. Now shoppers in Amsterdam will get the chance to visit Europe’s first plastic-free supermarket aisle.


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