Help me choose: Sustainable drinking straws
Whether made of glass, stainless steel, paper, bamboo or wheat, there is no question that reusable or compostable paper straws are better for the environment than plastic. More than 500 million plastic straws are used every day in the U.S., and they are inevitably used for minutes before being thrown away. Since they are too small to be recycled, plastic straws may persist in the environment for hundreds of years, breaking into tiny pieces over time.
Obviously, the best thing to use in lieu of a plastic straw is nothing. But for some, straws are a necessity, and there are definitely occasions where using a straw is simply nicer!
The main options are biodegradable paper straws, either made from wood or bamboo, or reusable, made from silicone, stainless steel or glass. We review the options here.
David Attenborough's Blue Planet II brought the attention of the world to the devastating environmental impact that single use plastics including straws are wreaking on our planet, particularly our marine life. Since they are small, plastic drinking straws are often mistaken for food by animals and because of their cylindrical shape, straws can cause suffocation and death to animals. Thankfully, the world's leaders have started to take notice, and in England, plastic straws were banned in October 2020.
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