Treasure for Trash?

June 29, 2009

Its not fun picking up after others, and I occasionally fall into the trap of – “others will do it, especially those paid to do it.”  However, at many of the beaches I travel, the only people who will pick up after others, is those who choose to do so.  And they won’t get paid for the action.  Throughout the world, there are annual beach clean ups, and they work phenomenally well for two or three days a year.  The other 360 days the beaches are left to absorb the trash, have it blow off to sea, or be ingestegarbage cand by marine mammals.

It strikes me as an obvious marketing opportunity for intrepid companies to encourage weekly beach clean up activities.  I think of all the youth groups, senior groups, family groups who love to participate in activities, yet, why not tie-in a marketing initiative – like trash for treasures (cookies, prizes, coupons, enter win, and more).  I think of all the non-profit groups desperate for money, yet here is a great way to convince foundations to give – by promising a true tangible action – a reduction in ocean going debris and trash. Enough with research and data, get to work making an immediate difference!  Perhaps we need to pressure our representatives to start giving grants for action as well as brain power.

If we ever hope to stem the tide of plastic, trash, debris and toxicity going into our oceans, its time to start thinking about incentives, the current laws don’t seem to do much.  Post your thoughts!


Wrap This Around Your Car

June 22, 2009

I’m watching television the other day when a new product commercial is aired.  This one really got me steamed.  I’m not a fan of disposable throw away cleaning aids.  They are a waste and fill up landfills with crap that will never decompose.  Sorry, back to the commercial I saw.  There is this new plastic wrap that goes on the front of cars so that bugs don’t ruin the paint job.  “Just peel off and throw away!”  It comes in a 100 foot long roll, and you can constantly wrap your car in plastic – for its protection.

I drive a lot for my work – I drive a Prius – I’m trying to do my part to lesson my footprint – and I admit its challenging.  However, this is plain lunacy, talk about unbelievable waste of resources, landfill space and for what – bugs?  I take a hose and rag and wipe them off, and my paint job looks just fine. 

So here’s the question of the day – when do we start telling these companies  – No.  No to waste, no to irresponsibility, and no to bad product development.  Of course it will sell – our cars need constant protection from the environment – too bad the environment has no protection from idiotic companies.

Polluter Economics

June 19, 2009

pollution 8In looking at the root causes of U.S. based pollution – and I classify pollution as substances that are harmful to human health, environment, and plants and animals.  There seems to be an interesting grouping of polluters – defined much by economics and education.  On the high end of the economic scale – corporate polluters, those specific individuals who have lobbied with influence and cash to be able to dump their waste into our air and water – legally.  Then there are those who dump their trash and waste – illegally along dead end roads, into rivers, streams and parks – who are not of financial means. 

This perspective or revelation has always fascinated me.  The far ends of the economic spectrum (rich/poor) seem to create the most damage, with some key and important differences.  Those of financial means, know better, are highly educated, know exactly what their pollution does to the environment – and don’t seem to care. 

The group without financial means and higher education (on average), is polluting to escape fees, fines and paying for disposal, or frankly just don’t care.  I see one other key difference, corporate based pollution tends to be very dangerous to health, where as old tires, trash and appliances is a clean up nuisance andemerging health concern – except where marine mammals ingest this refuse (see my blog on plastic pollution in our oceans).

For me, in terms of ocean conservation, the litter and trash along the beaches, stuck in the reefs and filling the gyres of the world is one level of threat, the other is the un-seen.  The toxic contaminants that fill our oceans and truly risk the health of every living thing on our water world.

So what is the solution?  Should it be more enforcement, more fines and better monitoring of health damaging toxins?  Should we pay for pollution cops?  Do we spend money on better (mandatory) education on pollution threats?  Send me your comments!

Scream If You Must…

June 13, 2009

pollution 4Get active, make a difference.  This Planet Protect Blog is about activism and how to make your voice heard.  We are living at a time of cross roads; decisions need to be made that will affect our way of life, our health and our care of our planet.  You’ll hear people say, that the planet is dying, that nothing will survive if we don’t act.  Not true, the planet will survive, life will endure, it’s just… will we be along for the ride?  The Earth has survived unimaginable devastation in the past, and life has re-emerged time and time again.  The Earth will survive us.  I however, want my children along for the ride.

This is a critical time for us to make a difference for the human race, for our families, our children and our place in the natural world, and to create a healthy and sustainable future for the next and future generations. And that also means not ignoring our animal and plant friends, we are intrinsically tied to everything in this closed natural system we call a planet.

Our health and longevity cannot afford the onslaught of pollution. We cannot continue to treat our air as a dumping ground for every toxin created.  We cannot allow companies to dump every toxic substance left over from manufacturing into our rivers and oceans.  Its time to say enough is enough – and the only way to make a difference is to speak up.  If you’ve never written your congressional representative or senator – do so.  Protest, march, scream if you must, but make yourself heard.   I created Planet Protect as my form of activism, with T-shirts, with donations, with web sites and public speaking – this is my activism.  What is yours? I really want to hear…

Home Toxic Home

June 9, 2009

Today’s Blog is about home based pollution, you know, those household cleaners, insect killers, drain remedies, carpet fresheners, and scented plug-ins and throw way aids. Billions of dollars are spent every year to fill our home with poisonous, toxic remedies for simple cleaning applications.  Aren’t we all guilty of buying some kind of cleaning solution without much thought?  Do you ever read what’s contained in many of those cleaning products? Do you honestly care where this toxic cocktail ends up?

It’s a scary thought to think of the millions of US homes filled millions of gallons of toxic chemicals.  Who do we blame?  The chemical companies that spend billions to lure us into buying this stuff, or ourselves for succumbing?  Over the next few days watch your favorite television shows and see how often a cleaning product is advertised.  The next time you go shopping for food; look at how many isles are dedicated to cleaning solutions.  You’ll suddenly realize just how out of control the situation is.

How does this affect us?  Only 200 chemical compounds have been checked and tested by the FDA, 80,000 exist on the market.  When I stop to think of the proliferation of cancer centers, cancer hospitals and cancer medications on the market today, and think about how many people you now know with cancer – are we the cause of our own suffering – so that the kitchen floor is lemon fresh?

Seas of Tragedy

June 6, 2009

The crash of Air France Flight 447  is a sad tale, and we may never know what caused the crash and our hearts go out to the families in need.  Today, a story emerged that once again highlights the dire need to protect our oceans.  As the rescue crews are searching for remains and clues to the crash of flight 447, the crews are discovering our oceans are trashed.  In fact, the trash is hampering the search.  Please check out the link below to read the story.

Its becoming more and more clear to our world’s citizens that the oceans are becoming garbage dumps for the world’s cities.  Planet Protect Sportswear’s main mission is to highlight this problem and offer solutions, though I hope the problem is never revealed again is such a manner.

Out of this tragedy of Air France 447, the reporters on the scene are noticing another unfortunate truth, the pollution levels of our oceans are becoming starkly obvious.  Both strike me sad in different ways, both profoundly.  Let me know what you think…

Reef Madness

June 4, 2009

coral 1Summer is almost here, and while its our busiest time of year for clothing sales, its also the busiest time of year for our reefs, coastlines and marine environments.  Millions of people will visit the ocean this summer in hopes of seeing fish, stingray, octopus and other marine life.  I have to admit there is no greater thrill than floating free and easy in the surf and watching the interactions of the diverse marine life our planet has to offer.

We at Planet Protect Sportswear want to offer our customers and the readers of our Blog some simple advice when it comes to visiting reefs around the world.

1. Leave The Beach Cleaner Than You Found It.  Which means taking out other people trash as well as your own.

2. Keep The Ocean Clean.  Grab any floating debris (man made) such as plastic so that marine animals don’t mistakenly ingest the material.  I take along a mesh sack so I can clean the reef.  I’ve taken out bags full of stuff over the years – some of it very disturbing.

3. Practice Floating.  Don’t stand on the corals, these are alive and are easily damaged and killed by your weight.

4. Enjoy The Marine Environment.  Please don’t chase, feed or touch marine life.

5. Keep Cigarettes off the Beach.  You find hundreds of butts, try to gather them up and dispose of them.  See my blog about cigarettes in May, 2009.

6. Support Reef Friendly Businesses.  Those suppliers who activily participate in beach clean-ups and reef clean ups, plus donate to marine advocacy.

7.  Make Sure Your Hotel and Dive Operator: “walk the talk” and are adamant about protecting the oceans.

8. Help Others Understand Our Oceans.  We are the only ones who can advocate for our planet and its oceans.  Start speaking up!