Giving Compass' Take:

· Writing for the Surfrider Foundation, Rachael Coccia addresses the major problems with plastic: not only does it litter our world and hurt life on our planet, but the lifecycle of plastic is a large contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, making it a serious concern for climate change.

· How can we reduce the amount of plastic used in day-to-day life? What are some plastic alternatives? What are some other risks associated with the use of plastics?

· Interested in taking action? Here are some simple tips to help reduce single-use plastics in your life.

It's easy to understand the problem with plastic. We can see it littering our parks, waterways, coastlines, and ocean. We can see the harm it does to turtles, birds, and even whales. We can literally hold it in our hands. But did you know it's also contributing to another large and urgent problem that threatens our very survival? Here's one more (BIG) reason to go plastic-free!

As if plastic pollution wasn't bad enough, a recent report by the Center for International Environmental Law found that the lifecycle of plastic is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions and therefore is a serious contributor to climate change. According to the report, in 2019 alone the production and incineration of plastic will equal the emission from 189 coal power plants. What's even worse is that plastic production is on the rise. If the projected rate of increase continues, by 2050 that number will jump to 615 coal power plants and result in 20 percent of global oil consumption. From cradle-to-resin, plastic racks up a hefty carbon footprint. Let's look at the damage it does over three stages - beginning, middle, and end of life.

Read the full article about the problem with plastic by Rachael Coccia at the Surfrider Foundation.