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NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Town Office, Fort Fairfield, Maine, USA

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Town Office, Fort Fairfield, Maine, USA
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Registered: December 2017
City/Town/Province: Fort Fairfield
Posts: 1
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According to National Geographic, 91% of plastic isn't recycled. That's a lot of plastic. After going to my local landfill cleaning up with my Gifted and Talented group as a fundraiser, I saw first-hand the problems that plastic creates. Plastic, comes in many shapes and sizes from plastic soda bottles, to plastic labels on food, to plastic garbage bags, and to the plastic shopping bags you get when you purchase your groceries. These light-weight, plastic shopping bags plague the Earth and its creatures.
At my high school, seniors are required to complete a senior exhibition project where students get involved in something they are passionate about and do a project to better their community. The Earth is not only a precious thing to me, nor just my community, but to all living creatures in the world. Therefore, I decided to take this problem head on and make a difference, not only in my community, and not only for the Earth, but for the world.
To start my project, I completed a large amount of research on plastic bag reduction. In my home state, Maine, many cities have already taken action to try to reduce plastic bag consumption. The various initiatives include: take-back programs, bans, and fees. I explored all of these options and discovered that fees on plastic bags are the most effective because they force consumers to make a conscious decision on whether or not they want to purchase a plastic bag, along with consciously purchasing their groceries. The fees usually come in quantities of 5 cents and stay within the individual retailer; which can then use that money to reinvest into purchasing and selling reusable shopping bags.
To apply all of this research to my senior project, I decided that I was going to make a presentation to my local town council. The thought of proposing a fee to a group of adults as a seventeen year old girl was intimidating, I admit, but I was ready for the challenge and passionate about the topic.
The meeting took place about a week ago. After the meeting, many people shook my hand and responded saying that they enjoyed my presentation, including a couple council members.
Though the fee may not be passed in my little town, I did have the opportunity to be included in the local newspaper, and the opportunity to advocate about a topic so many people forget about. There was a lot of research, planning, and hard work involved, but I don't regret one minute of it. In the future, I plan to continue advocacy for the health of the Earth, and I hope that I can get more involved as well.
Date: December 31, 2017 Views: 4389 File size: 15.5kb, 167.5kb : 800 x 600
Hours Volunteered: 100
Volunteers: 3
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 17 & 17 to 40
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