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RGISC Earth Week - Day 3

Published on:  
April 22, 2020

Happy Earth Day!

And welcome back to Day 3 of our #RGISCEarthWeek micro-workshop series! Today, we focus on the growing single use plastics crisis impacting our planet. We present a clip from a powerful new documentary called “The Story of Plastic.” (4:16)

Recycling will always remain an important tool for handling solid waste. But we can’t recycle our way out of the growing tsunami of plastic waste.

Even though we already find ourselves in the midst of a global crisis, industry has plans to QUADRUPLE plastics production by 2050. This can only occur if we allow plans to go forward that call for a massive petrochemical buildout in the United States: more fracking for oil and gas, and the building of more polluting refineries and chemical plants.

When we think about the plastics crisis, we have to think about the entire lifecycle of plastic. From the extraction and refining of fossil fuels, brand packaging, retail shops, consumer choices, and finally the end. More than 90% of all plastic made:

  • goes into a landfill,
  • is burned or incinerated, or
  • ends up as trash in our oceans, waterways and environment where it will breakdown into toxic microplastics for hundreds of years to come.

Industry has successfully framed the issue by telling us: 1) we can’t live without plastic, and 2) this is up to the individual – if only you would do your part and recycle, then we won’t have any problems. But this isn’t the case. Less than 9% of all plastic ever produced has been recycled.

To create a world and planet where we can truly break free from plastic – and end its widespread environmental, social and public health harms – we have to challenge the industry story and push for more sustainable solutions.

This is about demanding and creating profound changes to how we package, buy, consume and throw away goods.

We urge you to watch this 4:16 video clip of a powerful new documentary, “The Story of Plastic” released by #BreakFreeFromPlastic.

In 2019, RGISC joined the BFFP movement, attending two national meetings and becoming one of its 130 core members. Most recently, RGISC was named to its U.S. Movement Building Team, as one of three regional grassroots seats (Gulf Coast).

RGISC will be working with the team over the next two years to drive systemic change so that we can reverse the plastic pollution crisis and create the story and world that we want to live in and leave behind.

We hope that you will get involved and join us in that effort.



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Rio Grande for all of us

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will help us to continue this fight.
Our river needs to be protected and you can help!

help us protect
the rio grande

A tax-deductible donation on your behalf
will help us to continue this fight.
Our river needs to be protected and you can help!


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Laredo, Texas, 78040
Rio Grande International Study Center is a certified 501(c)3 nonprofit organization
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