Styrofoam is an “extruded polystyrene foam,” which heavily pollutes and affects our aquatic life as well as life on land. Producing Styrofoam calls for the use of fossil fuels, which rids us of our natural resources, harming our environment. Our landfills are 30% Styrofoam. Even though Styrofoam only accounts for 1% of all the pollution on the planet, 10 to 40% of litter found in streams is this harmful chemical. Because of its lightweight nature, the wind tends to blow it around, making it the number one pollutant. Styrofoam also breaks down into smaller pieces (but it does not go away). These minuscule particles are easily carried through our atmosphere and end up in the food sources of animals, causing several health concerns. To get rid of it, some even burn the Styrofoam causing it to release harmful styrene gas that hurts the environment and our bodies.
There is a chemical called styrene in Styrofoam, and it can seep into food and drinks. It is classified as a carcinogen (cancer-causing) and can irritate the skin, eyes, upper respiratory tract, and gastrointestinal tract. It is also known to cause tiredness, slow reaction time, and concentration, and balance problems. Impaired learning and sperm damage were also noted when exposed to high doses of styrene. It is a toxic chemical that is surrounding people all over the world due to the high usage of Styrofoam. Chronic exposure can cause severe effects such as depression, fatigue, disrupted kidney function, and hearing loss. When polystyrene is manufactured, various hydrocarbons are used, which reacts with nitrogen oxide to produce ground-level ozone. This harmful pollutant damages lung function and can eventually lead to respiratory problems. If schools continue to use Styrofoam products, this can severely impact a student's learning and health, making it essential to switch from Styrofoam plates to compostable ones.
Compostable lunch trays would be the best alternative to Styrofoam ones, as they emit so much less carbon dioxide when being produced. Also, compostable lunch trays take a relatively short time to break down. In around only three months, microbes take the waste and create compost out of the product. On the other hand, Styrofoam that is tossed in a landfill where light cannot reach it, cannot biodegrade and could take millions of years to break down. Even when broken down, the fragments are large enough to harm an animal’s digestive system when ingested. When Styrofoam reaches a high temperature, small amounts of styrene can be separated from the plastic, causing anything surrounding it to be contaminated with toxic material. Since Compostable lunch trays are made of organic material, they would not leave behind dangerous substances that would endanger our safety. Furthermore, the Compost produced has many advantageous uses, such as enriching and fertilizing soil. This leads to surrounding plants and wildlife to thrive. Statistics show that in 2015, over 50 million tons of waste that could have been composted were incinerated in landfills. Incineration contributes to global warming and air or water pollution, a growing problem that can affect our everyday lives and health. Composting could reduce this harmful practice by 30%. In the past few years, the amount of composting programs in cities and towns has grown by 65%. Together, we can raise this percentage and combat the decay of our beloved earth. Although Compostables can be slightly more expensive than your average Styrofoam trays, it is so much more critical to use compostable plates to conserve resources, reduce pollution, and reduce waste in landfills, because if we don’t, who knows what the future of the planet could become.
In this day and age, many people think right past the usage of plastics, Styrofoam, and other pollutants. Almost every single school across America uses these products daily, and no one considers the negative consequences of using these pollutants, and how much they can impact our beloved planet. So, we decided to take a stand and put an end to this. It isn’t going to be an automatic outcome, and it's probably going to be a long process filled with waiting and patience. Still, we must do this, so future generations don’t have trash and litter all over the earth. You might be wondering how only six high school students will do this all by themselves? Well, it all started as an idea, as every big accomplishment does. We reached out to our schools’ principal asking who to contact to achieve this goal. We have gotten in touch with our district's food services manager and the manufacturers of the compostable plates. We know that this isn’t nearly enough support to get this through to the schools in our district, so we hope to get more people to support us and take helping our planet to the next level.
By signing the petition and giving us your support, you are contributing to the improvement of our environment and world. Your signature on this petition will make it possible for us to get rid of the Styrofoam lunch trays schools provide, and replace them with compostable ones. Your involvement in the petition will allow for a cleaner environment with far less carbon dioxide emissions than there are now. Your support is crucial to this cause and will allow us to make a difference on our planet! Thank you!Read more
Tisha BhatRochester, MI, United States
Created Apr 24, 2020
Petition to Merck, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Charles River Laboratories
practices may be exemplified through the various alternatives for animal testing such as the following:
A development of diseases
Provided with these alternatives, using animals for drug testing can be stopped.
Utilize these alternatives for Drug testing and save the animals!
Unfortunately, many stores that sell standard printer paper don't sell tree-friendly alternatives planet. As previously mentioned, many stores don't sell tree-friendly alternatives for paper. Due toRead more
Victoria LeeUnited States
Created Apr 26, 2022
Petition to Environmental Protection Agency, Greenpeace USA, Target, Walmart, Walgreens, Publix Super Markets
the same amount to buy as their pre-packaged alternatives. Because of this, many people choose to buy-use plastics/bags in the bakery and fresh fruit/vegetable sections. Alternatives could be re-usingRead more
J HDublin, Ireland
Created Oct 16, 2019
Petition to The Hon Angus Taylor MP, The Hon Lily D'Ambrosio
The Western Victoria Transmission Network Project has been awarded by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to AusNet Services without due consideration for the wellbeing, safety and livelihoods of the residents of Western Victoria.
There are a variety of genuine concerns being raised by the community about the adverse impacts of high voltage overhead transmission lines. Some are unique to specific areas and interests, but together we share deep concerns about increased bushfire risks, especially following our catastrophic Black Summer, and the damage to the health and use of our environments. We do not here dispute the need for connections to renewable energy projects and the strengthening of the national energy grid. However community wellbeing, safety and livelihoods of all Victorians must be prioritised in any major infrastructure project.
We call on the The Hon Angus Taylor MP and the COAG Energy Council to require that:
In the interests of the residents, visitors and environments of Western Victoria, that AEMO undertakes and publishes an independent cost-benefit analysis for building the new Bulgana to Sydenham Line using an alternative means of construction, namely underground or above ground tunnels. This analysis must include consideration of the following issues in comparison to the proposed above-ground pylon construction:
The contribution of undergrounding to bushfire safety
The aesthetic benefit to tourism, livability and land-value
The effect on natural habitats, biodiversity and wildlife safety
The impact on distribution interruption frequency and a measure of the cost of these supply interruptions for homes and businesses across the state.
A project of this scale must not be assessed and the contract awarded on purely economic considerations. It should take measured consideration of all viable options and broad issues that will affect communities and environments for generations.
With fully informed options on the table this will provide an opportunity for AEMO and the state and federal governments to ensure world's best practice in electricity delivery by choosing a more long-term cost effective, safer and less environmentally damaging option. Make national infrastructure projects ethical now!
Photo Credit: Western Area Power (CC BY 2.0)Read more
TESCO, to stock non-plastic water alternatives.
Our petition has been started to give consumers the widely stock non-plastic bottled water alternatives, despite the fact that there are a growingRead more
women of India to adopt natural alternatives of menstruation hygiene, such as cloth pads, natural containing items from sanitary napkins to menstrual cups, covering major natural alternatives.
Our aim is toRead more
Over your lifetime you eat lots of ketchup. You put it on your eggs, potato’s, etc. imagine how much ketchup bottles you use every year. Now imagine how much you use over your lifetime. Now imagine how much your kids will use over their lifetimes (if you have any). Now multiply that by how many people in America and Europe eat ketchup, let alone the rest of the world. Now imagine how many ketchup bottles we will use in the centuries to come! Doesn’t take a genius to figure out that that’s a lot of unrecyclable plastic piling up. It would be very cheap and easy to replace plastic ketchup bottles with glass. Glass is much more easy to recycle, and if enough people support this cause, businesses such as Heinz will be forced to make change if they want to keep their customers. This is important because if you think about it on a grander scale, those ketchup bottles are being transported from the grocery store in plastic bags, along with all the other food and common household items that are probably also packaged in and made out of plastic, at least to some degree. We need your support to save future generations from a world of trash filled oceans and overflowing landfills, and it is by the power of a million small voices that we shall succeed, not by one big loud one. Every little bit of support counts, and I also encourage you to find ways to remove senseless uses of plastic from your life. Such as buying food from brands that package using cardboard or glass.
how we can “win” the petition:
the idea behind this petition is that once we get enough supporters and momentum, we can send these signatures to big brands, and possibly get sponsors to help fund the cause. We will send big businesses like Heinz ketchup a list of all of the people who signed the petition, and if enough people boycott plastic products sold by these companies, they will either make change, or lose millions of dollars worth of business. If 1 in a thousand Americans alone signed this petition, that would still end up being about 300 000 people, more than enough to scare greedy corporations into making changes for the better. So the best thing you can do is share this with every and any friend college family or aquaintance you can, it really makes a big difference. Each person can remove things like ketchup or plastic bags from their life, and over time this will add up and make a huge difference. We need you!Read more
Nico SparkCalifornia, United States
Created Oct 5, 2020
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