Boushell 1Alyssa BoushellProfessor Devon FulfordEnglish 122 - 04429 November 2018Small Sips of DeathPlastic straws are the fifth most found items in the world’s oceans, yet most people don’t know that. Plastic in the oceans has a very dramatic effect on the quality and lifespan of marine life. Because straws are made up of plastic, they can never decompose fully, and the damage thatthey are doing to our oceans will continue to intensify for generations to come. By reducing the use of plastic straws and finding more environmentally friendly options, people can reduce the bulk of pollution in the oceans drastically. According to The Oceans Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup List, plastic straws have been on that list for a remarkable period of time, however just “in the last three years, plastic straws have climbed the list to the Number 5 spot” (“Straws: Why They Seriously Suck”).This significant jump in the uses of straws seems impractical, but statistics show otherwise: “In [the] USA alone, 500 million straws are used every single day” (“Straws: Why they Seriously Suck”). That being said, it is not surprising at all that there has been a plethora of straws in the oceans. The problem is not the straws floating around in the oceans, although that is also unacceptable, the problem is how detrimental the straws are to all marine life. When straws are first in the oceans, they are typically near shores or popular tourist areas. Typical tourist areas often have snorkeling or scuba diving, which consists of coral reefs, and a numerousamount of different sea animals. For example, the sea turtle swims around these partially shallow areas. What happens when someone throws their drink of the boat and into his home?
Boushell 2His nose is the perfect size for the straw to get stuck in it, causing him to be in severe pain, bleed and become infected from one straw. Now imagine this happening thousands of times daily, imagine the effect it has on not just the sea turtles, but the dolphins, whales, seals and all types ofmarine life. Another extreme consequence of the colossal amount of straws used daily is the overflowing of recycling bins and trash cans. Often times when at the recycling plant, the strawsare too small to fit through the sorter, so they end up going to waste. Because of the light weight