Guts full of rubbish


Plastic bags from the stomach of a dead minke whale are making the news in the UK. British newspaper Daily Mail has a story on a whale found dead in the English Channel back in 2002. The animal was initially thought to die from natural causes but an autopsy revealed 2 lbs of plastic bags clogging the stomach. If the whales consume enough bags, their stomachs become full, they stop eating and they starve.

What to do, what to do? The City of San Francisco voted to ban plastic bags recently. Ireland, Uganda, and China are trying to tackle the problem, too. China banned free plastic bags.

Where does your city stand on the issue? Where do you? Craig asks us to go a week without plastic in his Just One Thing Challenge. I find it difficult, personally, but it’s getting easier and easier to remember those canvas sacks, especially after stories like this.

9 Replies to “Guts full of rubbish”

  1. I’m proud to say that we’ve eliminated so many plastic bags from our life that I am regularly annoyed at having to resort to newspaper origami when cleaning out the cat box or the mouse house. Anything for the minkes…

  2. Good point, seems as though the problems caused by all the plastic marine debris out there out weight the benefits. I’m fine remembering my reusable bags when I go grocery shopping. A small little change for me, but one that might make a big difference.

  3. A possible better link:
    Having column blurbs along the right about the personal lives of movie stars highlights that the issue has the attention of the popular press, but doesn’t do much for illustrating its importance.
    In addition to the canvas bags, there are lots of reusable bags out there that fold up small enough for a pocket/purse/glovebox, so it’s easy to have one on hand for spur-of-the-moment errands. Knitters can get on board with this:

  4. Re. #3 by tjewell, I’d love more people to know about Onya Bags ( ). They come in wonderful colours and fold up really, really small and go into a handbag. I’ve got the pink and turquoise one! Snazzy! They come from Oz and you have to say “Onya bag” in an Ozzie accent to get the joke! :-)

  5. That is truly horrific.

    As someone who has picked up LOTS of trash for years, I admit to using those plastic bags from the store for my kitty litterbox waste. I have no problem with using reusable shopping sacks, but what to do about the litter? Money is tight now…any suggestions?

    When I lived in Houston, after the Allison Flood I took a walk along one of the bayous and the number of plastic bags stuck in the trees was stupefying, though not surprising. All gutter waste goes out to the Gulf unfiltered, too.

  6. Wow, I never got a suggestion even being such a trash-picker-upper.

    [Leaving reading this blog]

  7. Oh no, Melusine, please don’t go! I should have written back ages ago. My fault. Perhaps you could use paper grocery bags for your cat litter?

  8. Thanks! The cat liners are too expensive, but I looked at some bulk cartons of paper bags that should suffice plus they have corn plastic bags(?). My state has a recycling program for plastic bags such as those from Walmart with the No. 2 on them. They want you take them back, but that doesn’t help the cat-litter disposal.

    One site here says the plastic won’t hurt anymore than paper in landfills. People need to just dispose of them properly and as with those economy lightbulbs, turn off the lights.

    I did the whole sides of the roads plus three yards and it was mostly plastic bags, styrofoam, candy wrappers and glass bottles. The river close by is pretty pathetic…next project.

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