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Letter: We can all do more to cut down on plastics

Western New York has done and continues to do a wonderful job of recycling paper, bottles, cans and metals which otherwise might end up despoiling our natural and man-made environment.

Plastic grocery and other plastic shopping bags, as well as plastic cups and straws, are difficult to recycle. They are often seen blowing in the wind from landfills, shopping centers and picnic areas. They essentially does not break down and persist for decades of time, perhaps for generations. How unsightly and depressing.

Worse yet, scientists have found that these plastic materials are being ingested by aquatic life, most notably in oceans throughout the world. Even whales have perished from ingestion of plastics.

As individuals, we can do much to alleviate the problem. Paper shopping bags are abundant and do not persist long in the environment. Hopefully, plastic and Styrofoam cups and plastic straws will be abandoned.

It should be noted that many large chain stores and drugstores are now providing separate containers for plastic bag recycling. Let’s use them.

Richard Leonard

Orchard Park

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