Groups Urge Biden to Take Action on Plastic Pollution Crisis
By Romero Halloway
With the anticipated start of a new presidential administration, advocates for curtailing plastic pollution are beginning a concerted campaign to convince President-elect Joe Biden to take urgent action to address brimming landscapes and pristine beaches marred by massive amounts of trash.
A coalition of conservation organizations released its Presidential Plastics Action Plan, urging Biden to craft and issue a series of executive orders intent on significantly curbing plastic production in the United States, given its capacity to pollute as well as its reliance on the petrochemical industry for production.
“We’re calling upon this power today to solve the crisis of plastic pollution,” said Angela Howe of Surfrider Foundation on Tuesday. “Our ocean is dying a death of a thousand cuts, and we need a powerful, multifaceted approach to address it.”
The approach focuses on Biden signing a moratorium on new plastic production facilities, stricter regulations on the petrochemical industry, using the power of federal coffers to shift demand away from single-use plastics, and ending subsidies of fossil fuels.
We here at Littorary support these directives as a start-up that is concerned about climate change. Furthermore many of these policy suggestions dovetail with our mission as a company — to use engineering, material science and design to create non-plastic products that will replace typical plastic-based designs for food and beverage aficionados and environmentalists alike.
We heartily endorse the executive actions proffered by the Presidential Plastics Action Plan.
Below are the eight detailed steps Biden can take as shown in the Presidential Plastics Action Plan:
- Use the purchasing power of the federal government to eliminate single-use plastic items and replace them with reusable products;
- Suspend and deny permits for new or expanded plastic production facilities, associated infrastructure projects, and exports;
- Make corporate polluters pay and reject false solutions;
- Advance environmental justice in petrochemical corridors;
- Update existing federal regulations using the best available science and technology to curtail pollution from plastic facilities;
- Stop subsidizing plastic producers;
- Join international efforts to address the global plastic pollution crisis through new and strengthened multilateral agreements;
- Reduce and mitigate the impacts of abandoned, discarded and lost fishing gear.
“The Presidential Plastics Action Plan lays out how the incoming Biden Administration can lead on this plastic waste issue and enact real solutions like updating important regulations and greater cooperation with the international community,” said Alan Lowenthal, a Congressman from California.
The ocean is fraught with plastic pollution, and one study expects the number of plastic trash items to outweigh the ecosystem’s fish by the year 2050. The plan also recognizes that the industry-generated rationale that most plastics are recycled is just a myth. In fact, the federal government has figures that estimate only 8% of the manufactured plastics created in the nation are ever recycled.
It’s time for a fresh approach.
“America was creative enough to invent a million uses for plastic, and now we have to use that creativity to clean up our act and design better alternatives,” said U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley.
Designing better alternatives — as the Senator says — is exactly what we here at Littorary are busy doing.
Our team is committed to making durable and sophisticated products that rival the convenience of plastics without the environmental burden. We believe technology and design innovations can revolutionize how Americans and the world consume products in concert with the health of the environment. Please stay tuned to our website, blog, and upcoming Kickstarter page as we unveil a product fully capable of providing the convenience and sustainability that will consign the concept of disposable plastics to the garbage heap of history.