Little tubes of death

They are around us every day – perhaps even in front of you at this moment. Little tubes of death that are seemingly innocent and yet cause mass devastation. 


Have you thought about straws? The unnecessary little plastic tubes that come in our drinks. Most of us take them right out and leave them on the table to be gathered and thrown out. 

There are some people who require them. There are some drinks that require them. However, for the most part, they are redundant (your lips were meant to do the job, right?). 

Straws are little, but think of every drink that comes with a straw in one day in one restaurant. Then compound that over 365 days. Times all the restaurants in our city. Over all cities in B.C… 

In the U.S,. 500 million straws are used each day. That is enough straws to fill 127 school buses every single day.

It’s estimated that three per cent of the trash covering Vancouver’s coastline is plastic straws and plastic stir sticks.

These little tubes of death end up in our oceans on our coastlines. Because of their size, animals mistake them for food. The straw that graced your drink a year ago could be the reason a turtle dies tomorrow. Or a bird. A dog running along the beach to fetch a ball and sees the colourful plastic straw in the surf. 

The truth is ugly, but there is a way for you to make a difference. 

In the spring, Vancouver became the first major city in Canada to fight straws. They introduced a “Single-use item reduction strategy” that restricts food vendors from automatically providing patrons with straws. 

Vancouver is also looking at ways to reduce usage of plastic cups, bags and other single-use items.

There has been some dialogue in the Okanagan about reducing straw usage, but you don’t need a city council report to start doing your part today. 

  • Tell your server you don’t need a straw. 
  • Servers ask your patrons if they need one. 
  • Restaurant owners put a label in your menu asking customers to let their server know if they require a straw. 

This is a challenge dropped to every Okanagan citizen to do their part: 

The fourth Friday in February is National Skip the Straw Day. Let’s start today so that by February, there are no straws to skip.


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About the Author

Like most people, Christy has taken many paths. On the officially documented life list, she is a certified yoga teacher, an advanced open water diver, a financial adviser, a Harley rider and owner, an author, a community advocate.

She has been trained in coaching, negotiations and communication studies. She competed at a provincial level in competitive swimming and now has a passion for overall fitness.

On the un-documented list, Christy’s diverse experience is both positive and full of pot holes. She is the founder and CEO of a start-up company that never made it past the start-up phase. She has enough tattoos to classify as a walking adult colouring book. 

She has gone through all the identity phases at different times in her life: hippie, gothic, classy professional, biker... and is now a unique blend of them all. She a spiritual junkie and is addicted to adrenalin, learning and travel.

The bottom line: She is full of love and lessons with a hope that those who read this and connect with her will benefit from what she learned and be inspired to reach for the limitless possibilities of life.

Connect with her at:[email protected]

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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