Cookies help us run our site more efficiently.

By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information or to customize your cookie preferences.

Search results

GoGreenNation News: Joe Biden’s Pause on Natural Gas Is Only a Partial Victory
GoGreenNation News: Joe Biden’s Pause on Natural Gas Is Only a Partial Victory

Victories in the climate fight are often hard to rigorously analyze. This one is tricky for all the usual reasons. President Biden’s pause on permitting for new natural gas terminals currently has Republicans howling with rage, and climate activists celebrating. Liquified natural gas (LNG) is one of the fossil fuel industry’s favorite scams—misleadingly marketed as “clean.” The climate movement has fought hard against the product.There are political reasons on all sides to exaggerate the significance of developments like this one. Democrats and liberal media want to goose turnout for Biden; showcasing sound climate policy is a better strategy than their usual appeals (which amount to, as a friend of mine put it, “Things are terrible. We are terrible. Send money!”) Republicans, meanwhile, want to animate the angry petrosexuals in their base. And climate organizations may sometimes exaggerate or downplay wins for fundraising and organizing purposes.But victory also intrudes on the bleak psychological landcape of the usual. Wins tend to get buried, especially in our social media landscape, because when it comes to seeking out and sharing information, we are more motivated by anger than by joy. And people who work on climate are so used to being bombarded with depressing information that progress often doesn’t even register. Yet we all need a win, and need to read about it, which is why it was such a pleasure to see headlines like this one from noted environmentalist Bill McKibben’s newsletter: “Um, I think we all just won.”The biggest reason wins are hard to discuss is that they are nearly always both real and partial, so the lenses of cynicism and cheer are equally valid. Biden’s move is, as is typical, only a partial victory. Climate journalist Emily Atkin has explained why: Biden has not blocked export of natural gas to other countries, nor has he paused the construction of already-permitted LNG export facilities. Nor has he paused or ceased the activities of LNG facilities that are already in operation. Indeed, as Atkin notes, the volume of LNG exported is expected to double by 2028. Last year, the United States surpassed Qatar and Australia to become the largest LNG exporter on earth.For years the fossil fuel industry has promoted LNG as a good alternative to coal, because it is a lower carbon energy source. Technically that’s true, but what that greenwashing language obscures is that LNG emits methane, which is a greenhouse gas and a major contributor to global warming. In fact, methane may be worse in this regard than carbon; it’s 28 times more effective at trapping heat in the earth’s atmosphere in the short term.It’s not Biden’s first good move on methane: he has signed onto international efforts to combat that pollutant, and in December, the Environmental Protection Agency announced a new rule reducing permissible methane from the oil and gas industry. Biden’s move on LNG permitting, however, represents a shift in emphasis for the White House—which has tried very hard not to come across as anti-fossil-fuel—and shows that this administration can be moved on climate, especially this year, with young voters so crucial to the president’s re-election.The decision puts on ice four projects with export permits pending, such as Venture Global’s Calcasieu Pass 2 (C2), in Louisiana, which has been loudly opposed by Gulf Coast activists, including those in indigenous and other fishing communities. C2 had been slated to become the largest LNG project in the country.Activists have been fighting against LNG at both a local level—from the Gulf Coast to the West Coast to Brooklyn—as well as nationally. Biden’s latest move is the result of this sustained pressure, but had Biden not made this decision, activists were planning massive protests in Washington, D.C. this month against LNG. And despite this latest development, organizing will continue around the country. People are showing up to town halls, writing their elected officials, and protesting both the local environmental and health risks of LNG installations and the global risks to the climate. We haven’t, unfortunately, seen the end of the LNG scam. The industry’s narrative is constantly evolving. Now that people have stopped falling for the misleading claim that LNG is  “carbon free,” or the intentionally confusing word “natural” inserted into its name, the fossil fuel industry is trying a new gambit: a new fuel mixture called “renewable natural gas,” a biogas that is at least 90 percent methane. It is renewable in the sense that it has been produced from waste materials, but that language obscures the dire harm of methane pollution, including its climate impact. The greenwashing propaganda of this last iteration of the “natural gas” scam have featured prominently in community fights over LNG in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and other places.Every movement needs wins. But we can’t stop pushing for more. Biden’s pause on LNG approvals should count as a motivating win, the kind that encourages us to keep fighting. Get out the champagne. Then take it to the protest.

GoGreenNation News: New food diets aim to reduce climate impact
GoGreenNation News: New food diets aim to reduce climate impact

Move over, locavores: A slew of new labels — from "climavore" to "reducetarian" — reflect the trend of people eating with sustainability in mind to reduce their climate "foodprint."Why it matters: Food manufacturers, restaurants, and supermarkets are racing to cater to the zeal for lower-carbon eating choices, which has people eschewing plastic packaging, ingredients flown in from afar, and foods that are environmentally damaging to produce.While there's plenty of disagreement about what to avoid, top villains include faves like red meat, chocolate, avocados, sugar, and — gasp — coffee.The "eat local" mantra is being replaced by the notion that what you eat is more important — since transportation is sometimes just a small part of your meal's carbon footprint.Driving the news: Terms like "climatarian" are getting newfound attention from corporate America as young consumers gravitate toward what they perceive as "green" diets."By 2030, our routine food choices will be climate-directed," advises a report from consulting firm Kearney. "The companies that mobilize now will win the future of food."Restaurant chains like Just Salad, Chipotle, and Panera Bread are putting "carbon labels" on their foods — and, in the case of Just Salad, adding a "climatarian" filter on its app.Supermarket chain Fresh Market is among the many food prognosticators that declared "climatarian eating" a top trend for 2023.What they're saying: "If you walk into your local Stop & Shop in the middle of January, those blueberries have been traveling for 10 days and probably started out in Ecuador," says Paco Underhill, an environmental psychologist and author of the forthcoming book "How We Eat.""There's a nascent movement, particularly anchored in younger people, that is recognizing that," he tells Axios.How it works: Climavores' rules "are not hard and fast," instead allowing "a level of flexibility, based on the preferences of those who partake," per Fresh Market's report."Participation can include everything from eating pasture-raised to buying more local and organic ingredients, to reduce carbon emissions from transport to eating a plant-based diet with crops that are good for soil."Climatarianism is "less defined by ingredients," and more by "food choices based on climate impacts, practicing climate-conscious eating based on a series of dietary trade-offs intended to benefit the planet."There's a dizzying nomenclature affiliated with climate-conscious eating, with meaningful yet hard-to-parse differences."Sustainatarians" eat some meat but filter their diet through an environmental lens.So do "climatarians" and "climavores," who tend to be concerned — as one manifesto put it — "not only about the origin of ingredients, but also about the agency that those ingredients have in providing responses to human-induced climatic events." "Reducetarians" try to eat less meat for reasons ranging from animal welfare to their health or the environment. "They might be concerned about biodiversity loss, fresh water availability, or food justice — or trying to save money," Brian Kateman, president and co-founder of the Reducetarian Foundation, tells Axios.What's trending: "Regenivore" is the latest and hottest eating label, the New York Times recently reported."A new generation wants food from companies that are actively healing the planet through carbon-reducing agriculture, more rigorous animal welfare policies, and equitable treatment of the people who grow and process food," per Times ace food writer Kim Severson.Yes, but: Eyebrows must be raised about the amount of greenwashing involved in corporate efforts to embrace climatarianism. "All food products suffer from greenwashing, including pet food," asserts Earth.org, an environmental news and data platform. The most common examples: Promoting a product as "organic" or "made from real ingredients" when it's actually from a factory farm or uses genetically modified ingredients.Class-action lawsuits have been mounting against the labeling and claims made by food companies.The European Union is cracking down on "misleading climate claims on packaging and in advertisements," focusing on phrases such as "climate neutral" and “100% CO2 compensated,” Bloomberg reported last week.Reality check: Despite the mushrooming number of calculators that help people gauge their carbon footprints, truly adhering to a climate-conscious diet takes work and restraint.While "Meatless Monday" and other such efforts have their adherents, it's unclear how big a sacrifice most people are really willing to make — like steering clear of mozzarella from factory-farmed cows or shunning almonds because they're water-intensive.The big picture: There are all kinds of vertigo in the food world over best practices — as encapsulated by the epic news of the closing of Noma, a Copenhagen restaurant sometimes considered the best in the world.On one hand, Noma fetishizes local ingredients and foraging, serving "grilled reindeer heart on a bed of fresh pine, and saffron ice cream in a beeswax bowl," per the Times, which broke the news of the closing.On the other hand, Noma was accused of exploiting workers and using less-than-humane tactics in the pursuit of fine dining.What's next: Climate-based eating "might be in its infancy" but will gain steam as younger consumers "increase their concern for the planet," Fresh Market's report predicts.The bottom line: The opacity of farming and food manufacturing procedures can make it hard to determine the provenance of one's meal or its true carbon footprint, but it may be true that every little bit helps.Jennifer's thought bubble: Throwing a dinner party has never been more of a minefield, with everyone's diet to consider (Noom? Vegevore? Ketogenic?). Best to check with your guests in advance.

GoGreenNation News: The BS Behind the USDA’s New ‘Climate-Friendly Beef’ Label
GoGreenNation News: The BS Behind the USDA’s New ‘Climate-Friendly Beef’ Label

Amid ever-more-frequent climate-related disasters, Americans are becoming increasingly conscious of climate change—and are slowly making the connection between the food they eat and greenhouse gas emissions. The food system’s biggest contributor of greenhouse gasses are cows, which create methane through their belches and manure. Most proposals for reducing the climate impact of our diets call for a drastic reduction in beef consumption in high-consuming countries like the United States. The beef industry has recognized this threat—but also sees a marketing opportunity for greenwashing its products, funding research and public messaging designed to assuage shoppers’ climate concerns. Over the past few years, the industry has helped spread claims that cows can be made low-carbon, with suggestions ranging from cutting emissions by converting manure into biogas, to adding methane-inhibiting seaweed additives to cows’ feed, to simply raising and killing them faster. Now, burgers branded with potentially false climate claims are coming to a supermarket near you. Earlier this year, beef giant Tyson launched its Brazen Beef brand, which claims to have a 10% reduction in its climate hoofprint. The company has made sure to mention its impressive environmental consulting partners in this effort, like the Nature Conservancy and the Environmental Defense Fund, as ways of juicing up their climate bona fides. And now, it has the official blessing of the US Department of Agriculture, which is both funding Tyson’s efforts to expand the market for its ostensibly lower-emissions products and, last March, approved a “climate-friendly” label for the Brazen Beef product. The first products marked with this label launched in supermarkets late last month.To say there are problems here would be an understatement. The government is not only working with major carbon emitters to promote their products, but it’s providing them a virtual blank check of taxpayer money to do so. It’s the latest instance of a too-close-for-comfort relationship between agri-food corporations and the agency that’s supposed to oversee and regulate them. Beyond the politics, the math behind “climate-friendly beef” just doesn’t add up.For one, no one can seem to find any evidence behind Tyson’s government-endorsed claim of 10% emissions reductions. In January, Matt Reynolds of WIRED looked into the USDA’s plans to support a “Low Carbon Beef” program and found scant information other than that the program might rely on a third-party certification scheme. In May, Emily Atkin and Arielle Samuelson of the popular climate blog Heated attempted a deeper dive, but couldn’t get any information on who is collecting the data, where it’s coming from, what methods and models are being used, and whether or how any of the results are being verified. No additional information has come to light since then. (Representatives from Tyson and the USDA did not respond to a request for comment by our deadline for this article.)Even if all of these protocols do in fact exist somewhere, it’s nearly impossible to confirm such a marginally small reduction in emissions in one specific product. Tyson sources its beef from across a wide range of farms; production methods among farms vary widely, with one study showing a 30% variation in carbon emissions between three commonly-used beef rearing methods in the Midwest. Even estimating emissions from a single rancher’s operations can be extremely tricky. What’s more, studies have shown that the methods for estimating emissions employed by the USDA and EPA might drastically undercount livestock methane emissions. There’s simply no reliable way to estimate a change in greenhouse gas emissions as small as 10% on any one farm—let alone a complex network of them. If that wasn’t confounding enough, understanding the carbon savings of “climate-friendly beef” depends on what you’re counting down from. One of the trickiest parts about businesses making claims about “low-emissions” products is that much of the time, consumers don’t have sufficient information about what the product in question is being contrasted with. The choice of a baseline matters here—a lot.There’s a little math involved in understanding the PR tricks at play here, so stay with us. One study conducted last year found that the average amount of CO2 needed to produce one kilogram of beef across the U.S. was 21.3 kg. It would be normal to assume that, per its marketing, Tyson’s Brazen products would use around 10% less than a similar number—or, at least, use a peer-reviewed baseline average. But the USDA actually allows companies to choose their own baseline off of which to market products—and allowed another beef product to advertise itself as “low emissions” using a baseline of 26.3 kilograms of CO2 per kilogram of beef. That’s around 11% more emissions than the number the other study found was the U.S. average. None of Tyson’s public Brazen materials state what baseline the company will be using to calculate its 10% emissions reduction claim—and the USDA has already proven it’s willing to let companies use baselines that make their products look much better than they are.The sketchy choice of baseline combined with all the uncertainties involved in quantifying emissions means that any consumer picking Tyson’s “climate-friendly beef” off the shelf hoping to reduce their carbon footprint could actually end up purchasing a product with more emissions than the burger or steak sitting right next to it. But even if we assume none of the aforementioned problems exist—that methods used to calculate emissions are best-practice, that the assumed reductions are actually being achieved, and that the 10% reduction is compared to an accurate national average—Brazen beef’s emissions would still be higher than almost any other food on supermarket shelves except conventional beef (which, for comparison, has more than five times the emissions of tofu).There should be little doubt that Tyson’s USDA-sanctioned “climate-friendly beef” label will confuse and mislead consumers. Getting consumers to change their diets is notoriously difficult, especially when it comes to making more climate-friendly choices. Asking people to reduce meat consumption runs headlong into a wall of dietary and cultural habits, food costs and access, and people’s defense mechanisms, especially those awakened by having the government tell them what to eat or by making perceived sacrifices. That said, studies have shown that labeling the climate impact of foods can shift consumers toward less greenhouse gas-intensive products. In efforts to align consumers’ climate concerns with the purchasing decisions, labels are a small but potentially useful tool. Consumers tend to trust labels that contain expert or government-derived information. But this usefulness and trust is undermined if labels make unverifiable or deceptive claims like “climate-friendly beef.” All the recent carte-blanche funding and greenwashing that the USDA has provided to major meat companies betray its public mission of regulating US agriculture. The regulatory capture of the agency is so blatant as to be mundane, and its revolving door policy with industry as unapologetic as in other federal agencies. The current Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, for instance, who also served for eight years under President Obama, spent most of the Trump administration promoting milk as head of the US Dairy Export Council; he has since returned to his USDA post under President Biden. On most issues, Vilsack’s claims align with those of major commodity producers, and his line on meat is no different. He has said he believes that Americans don’t need to reduce the amount of animal products we consume and produce, and that marginal methane reductions will instead be sufficient to right the climate ship. It’s not just Vilsack. Even climate leaders like John Kerry, the Biden administration’s Special Envoy on Climate, have avoided recommendations or even perceptions of advancing meat or livestock reductions, publicly placing their bets on methane-reducing technologies. This new government orthodoxy, however, flies in the face of the latest science, which is clear that reducing both production and consumption of highly-emitting products like beef is a necessary and unavoidable measure to reduce global warming. The USDA could readily nudge consumers toward gradual beef reduction. Initiatives like universal carbon labels could better inform shoppers about climate impacts across every product. Denmark, for instance, is currently trialing a government-funded “eco-label” project with the goal of building both consumer trust and climate knowledge. The European Union is also working on its own emissions labeling scheme. By providing trustworthy information and more choices, the USDA could help lower emissions without impinging on anyone’s liberty to sell or consume meat.But instead, the USDA is doubling down on its incumbent-friendly approach of investing in high-emitting products, promoting marginal technological fixes, and putting massive marketing resources behind them. Tyson gets to bask in the good PR and cash in on government contracts. And consumers will end up misled by the very government agency meant to educate and empower them.

GoGreenNation News: Did plastic straw actually bans work?
GoGreenNation News: Did plastic straw actually bans work?

This story is part of the Grist arts and culture series, “Remember When,” a weeklong exploration of what happened to the climate solutions that once clogged our social feeds. This story was copublished with Popular Science. It was the face that launched a thousand plastic straw bans. The video begins with a close up of the turtle’s head, its dark green, pebbled skin out of place against the stark-white boat deck. Robinson’s hands approach, moving the pliers toward the turtle’s nostril. The tool clamps down on the edge of something—a barnacle? a worm?—barely visible within the dark tunnel. The creature squirms and dribbles blood as the pulling begins. A long, thin object begins to emerge, inch by excruciating inch. It was August 10, 2015, and marine conservation biologist Christine Figgener was collecting data for her PhD a few miles off the coast of Guanacaste, Costa Rica. She and colleague Nathan Robinson were researching olive ridley sea turtles when they noticed a male had something encrusted in its nose. The pair decided to try to extract the object. Robinson flipped open his Swiss army knife’s pliers and Figgener grabbed her phone and began to film. “We had no idea what we were frigging looking at,” Figgener said in a newer, annotated version of the video. It wasn’t until one of the researchers cut off a piece of the object that they realized what it was: a four-inch piece of plastic straw. “We couldn’t believe that such a mundane object that we really use on a daily basis . . . that we found it in the turtle’s nose,” she said—“that a tiny object caused so much suffering.” A volunteer holds plastic straws picked during the World Clean-Up day activity in Kendari, Indonesia. [Andry Denisah / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images] When Figgener uploaded the turtle-straw video to her YouTube account eight years ago, it went viral. For a few years, plastic straws were the trendy rallying cry for sustainability. In many ways, the campaign was a success story—one that elevated our awareness of single-use plastics to the point where it resulted in actual policy change. But upon reflection, not all the solutions that spun out of the anti-straw movement actually held water. In recent years, many environmental pundits have focused on the movement’s shortcomings. To many environmentalists fighting plastic pollution, anti-straw advocacy now feels passé—out of touch with the broader need to address all forms of single-use plastic. But the movement’s rise and fall still holds lessons for the activists of today. From soda bottles to yogurt containers, there is a lot of plastic pollution out there. So how did we end up so obsessed with straws? The anti-plastic straw movement didn’t actually originate with Figgener’s turtle video. Back in 2011, a 9-year-old named Milo Cress found it odd that the restaurants he would go to with his mom in Burlington, Vermont, would automatically serve drinks with a straw, whether or not their customer wanted one. He approached the owner of Leunig’s Bistro and Café in Burlington, and eventually, Leunig’s became one of the first establishments in the country to ask customers whether they wanted a straw or not. Milo Cress, founder of the Be Straw Free campaign, photographed in Niwot, Colorado, on August 7, 2012. [Mark Leffingwell / MediaNews Group / Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images] Eventually, Cress and his mom made some calls to straw manufacturers and estimated that 500 million straws are used and discarded by people in the U.S. every day. The environmental advocacy group Eco-Cycle published Cress’s findings, which in the years since have been cited by nearly every major news media outlet that has covered the plastic straw beat, including CNN, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. (The credibility of that figure has since been questioned, with market research firms determining the figure to be between 170 million and 390 million a day.) But the turtle video added just the right amount of injury to plastic insult. Figgener’s viral footage helped stir single-use plastic outrage into a frenzy. Celebrities called on their followers to #stopsucking, a social media campaign that aimed to “turn the plastic straw into environment enemy number one.” Thousands of restaurants joined the pledge and the idea took off, reaching the rare environmental threshold of actual policy change. In 2018, Seattle became the first big city in the United States to ban plastic straws. It was followed shortly by other major municipalities in California, New Jersey, Florida, and other states. That same year, companies including Starbucks and American Airlines jumped on the anti-straw bandwagon, the former announcing it would launch a new “sippy” lid for its cold beverages starting in 2020, allegedly diverting more than 1 billion straws per year. A flat, plastic lid that does not need a straw is shown on a cup of Starbucks iced tea on July 9, 2018, in Sausalito, California. [Justin Sullivan / Getty Images] But for all its success in getting people riled up about plastic pollution, much of that outrage seemed limited to, well, straws, which only make up a small part of the single-use problem. National Geographic calculated that of the 8 million tons of plastic deposited into the world’s oceans each year, only 0.025% is comprised of plastic straws. Some anti-plastic advocates began denouncing the straw bans as “slacktivism,” a type of activism characterized by a lack of commitment or effort. They said the bans gave people an overblown sense that they were making a difference in combating the plastics crisis. For example, anti-straw pledges didn’t seem as concerned with other types of plastic waste or the fossil fuels associated with every part of their life cycle. Even the anti-straw Starbucks sippy lids were actually made from polypropylene, a type of plastic that has a 3% recycling rate in the U.S. (The company claimed it was still an improvement, as the new lids could potentially be recycled. Plastic straws are too lightweight and thin to make it through the mechanical recycling sorting process.) The anti-plastic straw movement also started getting pushback from disability advocates, who pointed out that some people need flexible straws to be able to drink liquids. Paper straws get soggy and fall apart more quickly, reusable straws made of metal are not easy to bend, and silicone straws are difficult to clean. For the average consumer, functionality is often more important than sustainability, said Leslie Davenport, a climate psychology educator and consultant. “Our brains favor habits because they conserve energy. So if we are going against the current—a BYO straw, for example—it’s hard for most people to do so unless highly motivated.” San Francisco’s Boba Guys tests alternatives to plastic straws made of metal, bamboo, and reusable plastic ahead of a 2018 vote that would ban plastic straws in the city. [Carlos Avila Gonzalez/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images] For restaurants that chose to continue to provide disposable straws, there were options beyond paper or plastic. Straws made with natural materials such as sugarcane and wheat are 100% biodegradable, but are inflexible and cost more to manufacture. As a result, many businesses looked to straws made from bioplastics—allegedly compostable plastics made from corn, sugarcane, agave, and other nonpetroleum sources. But according to Brandon Leeds, cofounder of SOFi Paper Products, bioplastics require specific disposal and processing methods, many of which aren’t always followed or clearly outlined, in order for them to decompose effectively. “Many businesses desire to adopt sustainable practices, and when they encounter these plastic-like alternatives, they may mistakenly believe that they can be environmentally conscious without truly moving away from the plastic aesthetic,” Leeds said. “The absence of stricter governmental regulations allows companies to take advantage of greenwashing tactics, making it difficult to differentiate genuinely sustainable options from those that are not.” Buying into greenwashing, a term that refers to environmental “solutions” whose appeal is based on appearing environmentally friendly rather than actually being so, “can be an unconscious psychological defense in individuals to shield them from the fear and overwhelming [feeling] of climate change,” Davenport said. “There can be an unexamined story of ‘I’m doing my part’ because it is more soothing than feeling out of control with the harmful and terrifying trajectory we are on with climate change.” A plastic straw and lid are among the trash washed up on a beach in Santa Monica, California. [Citizen of the Planet / Education Images / Universal Images Group via Getty Images] Plastic straw bans are alive and well today, with new proposals still cropping up at the state and city levels. But eliminating plastic straws is no longer the go-to goal of the anti-plastic movement. Part of that is the result of the existing bans’ success: For many consumers, the absence of plastic straws has become normal, even mundane. Now, anti-plastic advocates hope to harness in new ways the outrage they once inspired. According to Jackie Nuñez, the Plastic Pollution Coalition’s advocacy and engagement manager and the founder of The Last Plastic Straw, the anti-plastic straw movement helped advance awareness and understanding of other single-use products. California, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, New York State, Oregon, and Vermont have all placed some form of ban on plastic bags. The U.S. Interior Department stated that single-use plastic products will be phased out of national parks and around 480 million acres of federal land by 2032. In 2022, the Canadian federal government implemented a single-use plastics ban that included bags, cutlery, food-service ware, and stir sticks. It’s not really the item, it’s the material that’s the problem, Nuñez said: “All plastic is pollution by design.” Some activists have attempted to call attention to the scourge of single-use plastics by staging “plastic attacks,” in which protesters head to the grocery store and proceed to remove the plastic wrapping from the food in their carts and return the waste to the store. Shoppers leave excess packaging at the entrance to a Brussels supermarket as part of a “plastic attack” designed to to emphasize the overuse of plastic in supermarkets. [NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / AFP via Getty Images] Since they began in 2018, the strategy has gone global. Plastic attacks have been reported in places including in Hong Kong, South Korea, Canada, Peru, and the United States. Some of the biggest demonstrations have drawn hundreds of participants. The anti-plastic straw movement “triggered a light-bulb moment for a lot of people,” Nuñez said. “It ended up becoming a thing I call a gateway issue.” This article originally appeared in Grist, a nonprofit, independent media organization dedicated to telling stories of climate solutions and a just future. Sign up for Grist’s weekly newsletter here.

Join us to forge
a sustainable future

Our team is always growing.
Become a partner, volunteer, sponsor, or intern today.
Let us know how you would like to get involved!

CONTACT US