New Jersey Single Use Plastic Reform

New Jersey Single Use Plastic Reform

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Harry Donnelly started this petition to State Senator Vin Gopal and

The average lifespan of a plastic bag is a staggering 1000 years. This disregarded material of cellulose, coal, salt, and natural gas may get to roam earth longer than humans if our current carbon emission trends prevails. Between 4.8 to 12.7 million tons of plastic enters our oceans each year - such single-use plastic has been found in 60% of seabirds and 100% of sea turtles who mistake our trash for food, causing illness, injury, and death, impacting the delicate symbiotic relationship between all living things on earth. Not only does this disruption affect the lives of marine life, but also has a drastic effect on the environment and the humans that reside within it. Such plastic pollution is considered one of the greatest threats to environmental security, translating to one of the greatest threats to human existence. The indispensable role each and every living thing plays on earth in order for humans to live their everyday lives is an unimaginable feat - any disruption in this interconnected vastly complex system has dire ramifications.

Many New Jersey towns reside within miles of the Atlantic ocean. Being homegrown in Monmouth county and a lifeguard on a NJ beach, I am witness to the appalling amount of plastic that is not only washed up on the beach but also left by careless patrons everyday. It is our duty as human beings to protect the earth we stand on and continuing to pollute our oceans with single-use plastic is a crime on humanity.

I believe the implementation of a complete plastic reform is the only option that is both fiscally and environmentally beneficial, while offering the most practical answer for all persons.

California proposed a bill on December 1, 2019. In the California Recycling and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act of 2020 law makers Michael J. Sangiacomo, Caryl Hart, and Linda Escalante offer possible solutions to our current plastic crisis. Such intentions include increasing the use of recycled and renewable materials, develop long term incentives to maintain and increase recycling, composting, and reducing, and requiring plastic producers to pay for clean up of plastic pollution. 

I am petitioning to law makers that represent the great state of New Jersey to follow California in their aggressive initiatives to combat this impending threat to human existence. There is overwhelming evidence that plastic pollution from its birth and use of fossil fuels to its non-existent demise emits dangerous amounts of carbon, essentially choking mother earth. Such aggressive measures as those of California's efforts is a vital first step to reverse the effects of climate change and ensure the health and livelihood of our children and generations to come.

It seems as though climate change and threats to humans is talked about so heavily yet acted upon so inadequately, we've become completely numb to it. This is not a time to sit and wait but stand unapologetically and take action. Instead of relinquishing hope into the hands or those who benefit from killing the planet - we must be the change we have failed to see in the word. 

"In a gentle way, you can shake the world". Mahatma Gandhi

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