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Tripper, have you ever tried to count how many plastic straws do you use in one day? Today, plastic straws are almost certain to accompany every beverage we buy. Using plastic straws is practical, just use them, then throw them away. Why make it complicated when it can be so easy? Dude, you better educate yourself.
Sounds simple, but it turns out to be difficult in practice. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t live without a straw and it is worth a try because plastic straws are among the largest contributors to marine trash in the world. From data found by the Jambeck research group in 2015, Indonesia is ranked second in the world producing plastic waste to the sea which reaches 1.29 million tons per year, equivalent to 215,000 adult African male elephants. Well, that sounds horrible.
According to data by NGO Divers Clean Action (DCA), the use of straws in Indonesia reaches 93,244,847 sticks from restaurants, beverage drinks, and other sources. The number of straws consumed per day, if arranged lengthwise, will reach 16,784 km in length or equivalent to the distance from Jakarta to Mexico City. If accumulated a week, the length can reach 117,449 km, equivalent to a distance of 3 times around the earth.
The problem is, although the average plastic straw is only about 10 cm long, it takes 500 years for the plastic waste to decompose naturally. Weak plastic that is carried into the sea will become microplastic which is then eaten by marine animals such as fish to the size of plankton. Besides damaging the marine ecosystem, if the sea animals are consumed by humans, the bad effects will also be suffered by us. Talking about karma? probably.
If you want to take part in the movement to reduce plastic straw waste, it’s time to say no to them and move on to some environmentally friendly alternatives, this is a recommendation for a straw from Cosmopolitan Indonesia which of course I highly recommend, check these out!
Bamboo is a natural resource that is easily renewable and has many natural benefits, including being an alternative straw. Light but strong, bamboo straws can be reused, can decompose naturally without damaging the environment, and do not contain any chemicals or dyes. Bamboo straws can be used for warm or cold drinks without changing the taste of the drink.
In addition to bamboo, straw, aka the straw, is an alternative to environmentally friendly straws from natural materials, which are starting to be glimpsed by restaurants and bars because of their sleeker design compared to bamboo straws.
Paper straws can be a better alternative to disposable straws than plastic straws because they are easily biodegradable and environmentally safe. The colors and designs are various and more attractive to look at, but of course note that the coloring is safe for consumption, such as soy-based natural dyes. The disadvantage of paper straws is that when immersed for too long in water they will dissolve and tear easily.
Stronger than paper straws, straws made of acrylic can also be a choice of straws that can be reused with attractive colors. Kate Spade, for example, has sold a set of acrylic straws with beautiful colors and chic geometric motifs. However, acrylic materials can crack when dropped or washed repeatedly, so if not careful the usage period is not too long.
Elegant and sustainable, glass straws also have many attractive designs from a variety of colors and details. Besides being beautiful, glass straws are generally free of BPA (bisphenol A), an industrial chemical that is often used in plastic and resin products. Choose glass straws made of glass that are commonly used for laboratory equipment and Pyrex so that security and durability are more guaranteed.
Straws made from silicone can be reused, easy to clean and like a baby pacifier, can be boiled with hot water to keep it sterile. The silicone material that does not conduct heat makes it safe for warm and cold drinks. Also, soft and safe silicone material will not damage teeth so it is suitable for small children or those who like to bite a straw.
Straws made of stainless steel and metal can be used repeatedly, strong, and can be carried anywhere without fear of breaking. Choice of any form is straight or bent according to our tastes. What must be considered is do not forget to wash and dry it after use to prevent piles of stains and bacteria stick. Usually, metal straws are sold in sets, which include a cleaning brush.
So many campaigns carry without straws movement. Not only from NGOs like DCA or the Lonely Whale but also some private companies. Anantara Uluwatu Bali Resort, for example, no longer provides plastic straws in his hotel. Likewise, KFC fast food restaurant eliminates straw dispensers in some of its outlets as a #NoStrawMovement campaign. You can do it also! by continuing it reduces the harmful effect of human lifestyle and be wiser.