What to Give Up for Lent? Smoking? Cursing? How About Plastic?

LONDON — For Lent, many Christians give up indulgences like tobacco, alcohol or sweets, or transgressions like lying and swearing. And for Anglicans, don’t forget synthetic fabrics, wet wipes, and those little boxes that hold dental floss.

The Church of England has asked people to add a new culprit to the list of ills they forsake for the six weeks of penance that begin on Ash Wednesday: plastics. Specifically, the church wants people to avoid the plastic consumer products and packaging that have become a major environmental problem, polluting oceans and rivers, fouling beaches, killing wildlife and clogging landfills.

By RICHARD PÉREZ-PEÑA

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Lucy Marie Horton
94% of U.S. tap water contaminated by plastic fibers — including from the faucets at Trump Tower

Virtually all the world's tap water is contaminated by microscopic plastic fibers, a new study claims.

Trump Tower, we have a plastics problem. Researchers who tested tap water from around the world found that more than 80% of the samples contained microscopic-sized plastic fibers — including from President Trump’s New York City home, they said.

By Matthew Diebel

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Lucy Marie Horton
WHO launches health review after microplastics found in 90% of bottled water

Researchers find levels of plastic fibres in popular bottled water brands could be twice as high as those found in tap water.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has announced a review into the potential risks of plastic in drinking water after a new analysis of some of the world’s most popular bottled water brands found that more than 90% contained tiny pieces of plastic. A previous study also found high levels of microplastics in tap water.

By The Guardian

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Lucy Marie Horton
Ocean Plastic Pollution Isn’t Just Immoral, It’s Illegal

Campaigner can use the moral force of international law to drastically reduce pollution to oceans.

The pollution of oceans with plastic litter, discarded nylon fishing nets and eco-toxic microbeads is well known as one of the great scourges of the modern age ― not just entangling and choking endangered, charismatic species like sea turtles, dolphins and even great whales, but attracting long-lived organic pollutants that end up permeating the entire marine food chain, right up to the fish on our plates.

By Oliver Tickell

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Lucy Marie Horton
EPA's Scott Pruitt declares 'war on lead,' three years after Flint water crisis began

Beginning an effort to “eradicate” lead poisoning from drinking water.

Pruitt hosted a meeting Jan. 8 for state and local officials at agency headquarters in Washington to obtain feedback on ways to update the 1991 Lead and Copper Rule, a federal mandate that dictates how communities test for lead in drinking water. It has not been revised in more than a decade.

By Josh Siegel

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Lucy Marie Horton
The Ocean Is Filling Up With ‘Plastic Smog’

And humans are entirely to blame.

Every year, billions of pounds of plastic waste ― grocery bags, drinking straws, even cigarette butts ― pour into our oceans. Used by humanity for a few minutes at most, these single-use plastics likely will likely stick around for decades, or longer.

By Nick Visser

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Zoe Boxer