Letter: Ban on single-use plastics is needed

For me, part of the draw of attending school in Illinois is the beauty of my campus - situated right on Lake Michigan, with grassy beaches and beautiful sunsets over the water. The unseen, zoomed-in version of that picture perfect scene, however, is the microtrash, the plastic pieces, the styrofoam that litter the lake's shoreline.

It is this plastic, this unnecessary trash, that can and should be banned with the passing of a polystyrene foam ban by the Illinois state legislature. There is no legitimate purpose to single-use plastics; they are discarded, forgotten about, and (rarely) recycled in a pattern that perpetuates our destruction of the environment.

Illinois' environment cannot afford the barrage of plastics, and we must begin to phase out plastics, starting with a ban on polystyrene foam.

Plastics not only litter our beaches, but they also litter humans and animals' bodies. Recycled at a

rate of only 0.4%, single-use plastics easily break down into smaller pieces and are ingested by pets, and even by people themselves.

These plastics destroy the natural beauty of our state, they perpetuate a cycle of waste and they poison our bodies. It is now up to our state legislators to do their part to protect the environment and our bodies by supporting a ban on single-use polystyrene foam.

Cate Osborne


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