Thanks, Thom for this article. Greed has ruined this planet.

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Aug 29Liked by Thom Hartmann

Well, at least we can't say we weren't aware. Thanks Thom. I don't think it'd matter what containers were used, there'd always be an issue. I remember when our fish and chips used to come wrapped in newspaper - imagine the chemical residues! All we can do is try to assuage our consciences by using the best available containers; guess I'll be switching to a stainless steel water bottle.

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Remember the scene in "The Graduate" when the man (perhaps Mr. Robinson, I don't recall) pulls Benjamin aside to give him advice for a successful future? He says, "I just have one word--"plastics".

Who then had any idea of the double-edged sword plastics would turn out to be?

One of my mother's favorite sayings was "the road to hell is paved with good intentions". I doubt any of the chemists who discovered the makeup of plastics, or those who found practical applications for them had any idea of the disaster they were creating.

Evolution generally functions over millennia in response to exposure to the natural environment. The modern environment to which we are being exposed is man-made, bring us into contact with elements of human invention not natural selection. Thes inventions are exposing us to elements which nature might never have created if left alone.

Remember the motto of the chemical industry: "better living through chemistry"? There was another popular at about the same time:: "it's not nice to fool mother nature".

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In a related issue, there is pretty good evidence that for decades male fertility rates have been dropping all over the world. While correlation is not causation, and there are many chemicals that could be culprits, this certainly is a bad sign. In a way it is sort of understandable; humans damage nature, so nature reacts by reducing the number of humans. (A similar irony is how climate change could well make the largest oil exporting states of the Middle East so hot as to be virtually uninhabitable.) I am old enough to remember when people were debating whether smoking was really that bad for you, and it is just a matter of time until plastics gets the same sort of public discussion. Unfortunately by that point they will be far harder to control than tobacco ever was.

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I understand that tap water is a large source of micro and nano plastics. I see people buying filtered water in 5 gallon and 1 gallon plastic jugs, they even refill machines for these jugs.

I use well water, which I then filter. Now I am very concerned. I wonder if they have a kit for testing well water, for plastics.

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What a mess greed has made of this world.

It seems nothing is good enough in its natural state.

So much ‘ progress’ is killing us.

And the manufacturers of the most toxic , are the wealthiest .

When we have it backwards, we are unable to respect what we’ve been given.

And our duty to protect is insulted by the lies that protect the manufacturers of these killer ‘goods’.

Again the Supreme Courts repeated blunders

have sentenced us to death by toxins . They refuse to allow protections to water sheds and bodies of water.

It seems looking into and investigating , before their blatantly ignorant decisions are made, might be an option for a less arrogant group who might choose people over profits.

Not this conservative cult.

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How are the right wing Republicans going to blame the liberals for this?

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Cause of death:

Pragmatism in pursuit of profits.

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Aug 30·edited Aug 30

Life or death? Are we going to let the industry, market place and stock markets continue to determine what we do or don't do with fossil fuel? It's long past time to decide, much less stop the subsidies.

If people can reduce, reuse, and repurpose it would be a start. Regulate and stop the crazy packaging we are using! Chasing down the chain of the worst sources would help.

The scientists working on ocean plastic pollution are on it. The Guardian published an article titled "Microbes discovered that can digest plastics at low temperatures" on May 10, 2023.

Of course, the answer is to leave fossil fuels in the ground and find new materials that can possibly biodegrade.

Know a brilliant young person that wants to save the world? Tell them about what they could do with a degree in Material Science.

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My chemistry education and later work experience for a biotechnology company has affirmed this situation in a cumulative way. While there were plenty of research jobs when I was in college all the way to my current retirement the actual research of what all this synthesis was about lagged behind. I guess there is no money in it and only a bit more in hindsight.

In one of my Organic Chem classes I recall a passing statement of 30,000 organic chemicals (approx. at the time) but no research on their effect and of course more in development every year. Unless there is a known carcinogenic compound like say benzene ( everyone knows the benzene ring symbol?) there isn't much restrictions in place for use. The issue 3M has with their development and product application with forever chemicals may be widely known locally but there are bad news stories like 3M's everywhere as we are finding out, AFTER of course when it is too late.

There is an article in WaPo recently about how breast cancer is happening in younger women at increasing rates. Like in their early 20s! Unfortunately we the people maybe experiencing the "f-ed around and found out" as a result of our inability to face facts and deal with them politically. Nice going GOP the party of the death cult which also has me recalling the movie The Graduate..."plastics", indeed,!

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Aug 29·edited Aug 29

It appears that folks in and around the Aegean Sea, who travel to resort Islands in this beautiful part of the world, have noted for years how the plastic in the Sea washes up all over the beaches. I heard a podcast about Montenegro (I think it was) which has certain arrangements with Germany and industrial areas of the EU to do trash carting to the east via rail and much is dumped in eastern Europe, where environmental standards are weaker, and some time a ago one of those landfills washed into the sea. Also, supposedly researchers can see that even at the top of the Pyrenees mountains, there is high levels of plastic components (whatever becomes airborne, I suppose).

Of course we also know that so-called trades deals often involve the protected ability of companies to leverage or arbitrage the lower environmental standards that apply outside the US. So even when certain standards are good here we allow offshoring with lower standards.

Of course we have this situation in which this country had a much more rational attitude about dealing with environmental issues some 20-30 years ago, and we've noted that whether we are discussing transitioning to the new EVs, or just the ridiculousness of driving a car to supermarket to buy and take home heavy beverages often of no particular health value (soda) in fossil fuel-based containers, the American society lags behind in awareness and sensible steps that can be taken. My neighbor had a soda fountain at home in the 70s - we made soda at his bar with a squirt of syrup mixed with seltzer - all you needed was a metal spoon and drinking glass. Now try this at home today - my understanding is they make it too difficult. They want you to get your soda premade in plastic containers instead, and for everyone to drive back and forth. Thank about how inefficient this is! I dont mean to drone on but we should point out that these plastics are petroleum-based products that the oil industry profits from.

In the 60's there was an expression, people would say (I think this may be in "the Graduate" film) "I'm getting into plastics" because it was the new growth industry for hungry professionals in business. It seems that Bakelite was the first synthetic plastic and was well-known and kloved in its time.

"I'm not a telephone junkie

I told you that we were just good friends

But when I hold you like I hold that bakelite in my hands

There's no action...."

(Elvis Costello referring to bakelite in 1978)

This topic logically raises again the issue of ESG investing, which would enable better data reporting and analysis about this and other environmental impacts of business activities. Theres no doubt - use of the hazardous materials to store and serve food should be subjected to ESG reporting, to better inform and highlight the impacts. So, ESG anyone?


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Only 68...but feel like 100! Hahaha

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I think it all begins with, Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Messiah's coming back. After that the human brain is toast. Kind of sad really.

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