This 9-Year-Old Knows More About Plastic Pollution than Most Adults

This piece was written by Summer Faith, a PPC Youth Ambassador.

My name is Summer Faith and I am 9 years old. When I was 7 years old, I created my very first video "Let It Be Green" about Earth’s plastic pollution situation so that people could learn about what it is, and what it does to the environment. 

I care about the environment, because it just makes sense to me. If the environment dies, we will die. We need our environment to stay healthy.

After I showed my video to the school I was attending at the time, the kids were appreciative about me bringing the awareness to this subject and started noticing what plastic does to our planet. 

Many of the kids got inspired and started to pick up trash on beaches and even on school campus. I gave each child in my class a cloth bag for their school snacks to show them another way of packadging food that is safe for the animals and planet.

Though plastic may have large effects on nature, unlike what people think it also has very large effects on human health. When parents put their kids’ snacks in plastic snack bags the food absorbs all the chemicals in the plastic (and there are a LOT of chemicals in plastic) and then when your child eats the food all the chemicals that got absorbed into to the food get absorbed into their bodies and can affect their health.

The same is true for plastic straws. A great alternative to plastic straws are paper straws, or just don't use a straw. This is why I decided to participate in The Last Plastic Straw. I also joined The Last Plastic Straw because I wanted to start small and work on one thing at a time. I liked that they have chosen plastic straws as their focus because they are probably the most common plastic thing in use. They also work on encouraging companies to stop using plastic straws.

Soon after I showed my environmental video "Let It Be Green" in the school, I decided to go up to the golf course and hotel near my home and talk to the manager of food and beverage. I asked her to stop using plastic bottles in the hotel rooms and at the golf course. She and her team had a meeting during which they also watched my video. My solution was for them to start using glass bottles in the hotel rooms instead and stainless steel refillable water bottles on the golf course.

The meeting went well, although, I had a feeling that no change was probably going to be made. After two years, I went back and the lady I met with showed me the changes that the hotel and golf course they had made recently. Though I did get doubtful after a while and felt like they wouldn't do anything, in the end I was very happy that they did decide to make changes for the better!

I have learned that it’s important to be patient and not give up on yourself and believe that change will come even if it does so very slowly.

Thank you, Summer!

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