So Long, Single-Use?

So Long, Single-Use?

Single-use plastic is everywhere.

It's sitting in our kitchen cabinets and it's sitting in our shower caddies. It's wrapped around our on-the-go lunches and it's wrapped around our online purchases. We dispose of so much of the stuff, that now it's swimming in our oceans and it's swimming in our bodies.

Living in a nation so dependent on plastic, it's hard to imagine that the ubiquitous material has existed for less than a century. Is it time for us to kick our collective plastic problem?

Prior to this semester, the George Washington University, home of Planet Forward, announced a campus-wide ban on single-use plastics. Some Planet Forward Consortium schools have similar policies of their own. Inspired by these institutional moves, Planet Forward Correspondents and contributors report on both collective and individual means to say so long to single-use.

How do you move the Planet Forward? Tweet us @planet_forward or contribute to the conversation with your own story.

Hub Content

A person in a white shirt, head not pictured, holds a yellow water bottle with several colorful, overlapping stickers.

Paige Valego, GW class of 2021. (Greer Blount/George Washington University)

Planet Forward Correspondent | George Washington University
So Long, Single-Use? | As George Washington University students returned to campus in the fall of 2021, they took ownership of the university's single-use plastics ban through the personalization of reusable water bottles.
A stream of water pours into a metal tea strainer on the lips of a torquoise teacup.

(Matt Seymour/Unsplash https://unsplash.com/license)

George Washington University
So Long, Single-Use? | We all know breakfast is the “most important meal of the day”— do you really want to start it off with the guilt of single-use plastic? 
White plastic bag floating in a body of water.

(Brian Yurasits/Unsplash https://unsplash.com/license)

Planet Forward Correspondent | Ithaca College
So Long, Single-Use? | There’s plenty of confusion and debate around plastic bans on both the political and practical level. It’s easy to get lost in the logistics of it all –– but, at the heart of it, there’s one question: Are bag laws effective?
Yellow straws sit on the display case in front of a menu at a coffee shop.

Reusable "Simply Straws" for sale at Kahwa Coffee Roasting in St. Petersburg, Florida (Carter Weinhofer/Eckerd College).

Planet Forward Correspondent | Eckerd College
In the first piece in our "So Long, Single-Use?" series, St. Petersburg, Florida Councilmember Gina Driscoll said leading the way on single-use plastic started with "one simple object."