February 1, 2016 at 9:45 pm

Sustainability | Screening of ‘Bag It. Is Your Life Too Plastic?’ Feb. 10

The Common Experience Project on Sustainability Films presents Bag it. Is Your Life Too Plastic? on Feb. 10

A panel features Jennifer Cochran, Athens City Council; Heather Fuston, Rural Action; and Scott Miller, Zero Waste. Discussion topics include plastic, policy, environment, health, marine life, fossil fuels, alternatives to plastic, economics.

Sustainability Studies theme logoThe Common Experience Project on Sustainability is an initiative developed by University College. Partners include the Voinovich School for Leadership and Public Affairs Environmental Studies Program, Alden Library, the Sustainability Studies theme and Food Studies Theme, and the Office of Sustainability Ohio University.

Abstract: Through the entertaining persona of Jeb, the film delves into the history of the plastic bag and how it has become a ubiquitous part of our daily lives. Only 50 years ago, plastic bags did not exist! Jeb travels around the world to find better possible models. In Ireland he finds that a fee on plastics has had a tremendous positive impact on plastic bag reduction—over 90 percent. He ventures to communities in the United States that have implemented or proposed plastic bag bans and fees, and viewers learn of the complicated politics surrounding the issue. He discovers that the American Chemistry Council (the ACC) has been leveraging big money to keep plastic bag use free.

Bag It explores the impact of plastic on marine life. Plastic never fully degrades, and when it is thrown “away,” some of it finds its way into waterways, and eventually, oceans. Plastic breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, and marine animals are ingesting these bits of plastic . . . and it’s killing them. It is estimated that more than 100,000 birds and marine animals die each year from ingesting or getting entangled in plastic debris. Jeb learns that the chemicals in plastics are making their way up the food chain and straight onto dinner plates.

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