Next time you order that drink, consider refusing a straw with it. As we become more aware of the harms of plastic pollution, many people are saying “No Straw, thanks” in communities across the country.

Every day we throw away 500 million drinking straws. Straws are one-time use items that show up with our drinks as a matter of habit, whether we want them or not. As you can imagine, these little pieces of disposable plastic that don’t biodegrade, cost us a large amount of natural resources to produce and to dispose of as waste. All that for a few minutes of use. Plastic waste is also ending up in the oceans, injuring marine and wildlife when it’s mistaken for food.

Business establishments across the US have found that we use less straws when they simply offer them only when customers ask for them, instead of automatically serving one with every drink. In fact, one study showed that 50%-80% of customers did not ask for one when they had an option. So why not offer the option?

Without a doubt change is difficult. As consumers, we can encourage straw manufacturers to move away from making single-use disposable products and instead switch to, or include reusables in their production. Companies should be pushed to modernize as we demand sustainability from a product’s start to finish. Trashing the environment is not worth the 2 minutes of convenience.

So go ahead, make a pledge to reduce your impact by refusing the 2 minutes of so-called convenience marketed to us by single-use plastic manufacturers.

Do you want to know more about going zero waste or minimizing your impact on the environment by making simple changes? Contact me at for more information.