You’re walking through a busy food court at the mall and in your path is an empty plastic bottle, lying right next to a recycling bin. Do you pick it up and chuck in the bin, or step around it? That’s the set up for this video, filmed by Testé sur des humains in a Quebec food court. When an eco-conscious patron (I’m assuming—maybe she’s a neat freak, or she previously tripped on a soda container) scoops up the bottle and deposits it in the receptacle, she receives a standing ovation. It’s short, sweet, and quite powerful. Talk about positive reinforcement!
Looking for more info on plastic? Check out these Audubon stories:
Our Green Guru looks at whether it’s better to buy beverages in tin cans or plastic bottles.
“Pandora’s Water Bottle”: An in-depth look at effects of endocrine disruptors, which are in everything from skin moisturizers to skillets, from raincoats to water bottles.
"Trashed": Ever wonder where the cell phone or computer you toss ends up? Our writer follows her own digital detritus to the far ends of the earth.
Video: Machine turns plastic back into oil
The adolescent Laysan albatross had been named Shed Bird for the proximity of its nest to an old Coast Guard tool and fuel shed on Kure Atoll, a speck of land and coral reefs 1,380 miles from Honolulu in the far-flung Northwestern Hawaiian Islands chain. Photographers David Liittschwager and Susan Middleton had converted the shed into a temporary studio to photograph marine creatures for their large-format book Archipelago: Portraits of Life in the World’s Most Remote Island Sanctuary, the culmination of 20 years of work on endangered species. “We’d say ‘hello’ to Shed Bird every day when we went to work,” Susan said, knowing that the young albatross would soon fledge. But Shed Bird never reached the sea, dying from what a necropsy would reveal as a stomach bulging with and perforated by 12 ounces of indigestible items, mostly plastic debris, scooped up from the ocean’s surface by the chick’s foraging parents and regurgitated into its gaping beak along with squid and other edibles.
Zero Waste efforts around the country aim to go beyond “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”