Think of the word “pollution.” The first image that comes to mind is probably that of an overflowing landfill, or perhaps a dirty sidewalk littered with empty wrappers.
The reality of where a lot of our garbage ends up, however, is far more devastating. In 2010 alone, coastal countries polluted the ocean with 8 million tons of plastic trash, according to a study published in <Science.
The authors of the study predict that the amount of garbage tossed into the ocean could increase tenfold in the next decade if garbage management practices don’t change.
The solution? Finding new ways to reduce the amount of trash we produce, reuse what we can, and recycle the rest. To start, choose recyclable, biodegradable, or compostable products whenever possible. Changing your shopping habits—namely, buying less—is the easiest and most effective way to reduce waste.