Add graphic environmental warning labels to single-use plastic water bottles
This petition had 14,497 supporters
As a national and international leader in environmental advocacy legislation (single-use plastic bags have been banned in over 100 CA communities and a state-wide ban is pending a 2016 vote; enacting the strictest auto emissions standards in the US), California should continue its role at the vanguard of the conservation movement by placing graphic warning labels, similar to those now on cigarette packaging, on single-use plastic water bottles. Other petitions asking for corporate bans (Wal-Mart & Nestle) on bottling CA municipal water and groundwater resources have received over 100,000 signatures. Unfortunately, these bans will do nothing to alter consumer behavior. The success of graphic warning labels on cigarettes, a program initiated in the US in 2001, and now enacted in over 77 countries worldwide, proves that this is one of the most effective ways to get an important message outside the typical echo chambers of health or environmental activists. In a 2012 study using eye-tracking technology, researchers discovered that only 50% remembered a text-only warning label, while 83% correctly recalled the label containing a graphic image. If we as Californians want to do what's morally responsible for our planet, our oceans, and our state during this severe drought, we need to take every measure possible to curb individual consumer's reliance on plastic and waste of water. Eliminating single-use plastic water bottles is an important step in the direction of a more sustainable and ecologically just future California.
- Over 63 billion plastic bottles are dumped in to landfills and oceans each year.
- Plastic debris causes the deaths of more than a million seabirds every year, as well as more than 100,000 marine mammals.
- It takes roughly 450 years for a single plastic water bottle to decompose.
- North American plastic consumption per capita was 326 lbs in 2010, up more than 100 lbs from 2001.
- The United Nations Environment Programme estimated in 2006 that every square mile of ocean contains 46,000 pieces of floating plastic.
- Plastic in the ocean breaks down in to such small segments that pieces of plastic from a one liter bottle could end up on every mile of beach throughout the world.
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