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  • Writer's pictureGeoff Scully

Wind-blown garbage?

I'm not much of an environmental alarmist. As a child I spent summers at rented beach cottages and remember how the pollution from a nearby sewage treatment plant killed off the blue-claw crabs in the creek behind the cottages. Yet, as the decades passed the water became noticeably cleaner, and the sea-life rebounded. Regulations and awareness had had an impressive effect. So I'm not jumping on a soapbox, yelling for dire lifestyle alterations. I'm hopeful that over decades there will be continuing significant progress. But I was a bit alarmed about a recent New York Times article concerning wind-blown plastic, stuff so small and light it can travel thousands of miles. That it exists in the air - it's there when you open the window to get some "fresh air" - is bad enough, but it seems there's not just a little of it... I actually love plastic. I think it's great stuff; light-weight, waterproof, infinitely mold-able. But 94% of U.S. tap water samples contained microplastics in a 2017 study. And a person who eats a lot of shellfish would annually ingest 11,000 of these bits of plastic. Hmm... Love is blind. But when vision starts to clear, one may start to consider a trial separation.

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