SEATTLE -- As the problem of plastic in the world’s oceans and its impact on marine wildlife has gained more attention in recent years, Washingtonians from different backgrounds have acted to tackle the problem. On Tuesday, Environment Washington launched, “Washingtonians Against Waste,” an online project to share the stories of these activists, elected officials, business owners, academics and artists.
“It’s inspiring to see Washingtonians take responsibility for the environment by using public policy, art, research and innovation to solve the problem of plastic waste,” said Mandy Apa, Campaign Associate with Environment Washington.
Over decades, people have dumped millions of tons of plastic and other trash into the Pacific Ocean, creating an environmental disaster for wildlife. Scientists have found plastic fragments in hundreds of species, including 86 percent of all sea turtle species, 44 percent of all seabird species and 43 percent of all marine mammal species. Plastic and other marine debris kills millions of these animals every year.
“As an environmentalist, incremental action doesn’t always feel like enough, but you begin to realize it snowballs, and creates momentum that leads to systemic change,” said Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, one of Washingtonians featured on the website.
Environment Washington launched the project to share the stories of Washingtonians from all walks of life who are acting to tackle one thing: plastic pollution. The collection ranges from artist Karen Hackenberg using her underlying concern for wildlife by portraying plastics that she finds on the beach into her paintings, to Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, who championed the first plastic bag bill ban in Washington back in 2011.
Environment Washington launched “Washingtonians Against Waste” in the hopes that it will inspire other Washingtonians to learn more about plastic pollution in the ocean and then act to prevent it.
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Environment Washington is a statewide, citizen-based environmental advocacy organization working for a cleaner, greener, healthier future.