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Plastics and Climate Change: Consequences of Plastics Production, Use, and Disposal as a Major Contributor to Climate Warming and Harm to Health
Plastics have become an everyday part of our lives, including the many unintended consequences of plastic production, use, and disposal. Chemicals added to plastics – to make them stronger, more flexible, or UV resistant - have been found to be toxic and have widespread adverse effects on environmental and human health. The production and disposal of plastics is unjustly concentrated near low-income communities and communities of color. To add to this list, and the subject of this webinar, it is clear from the findings of a recent report that plastics are a major contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions and climate warming.

Beyond Plastics’ recent report is entitled ‘The New Coal: Plastics and Climate Change’. The report documents the ‘less-talked about’ relationship between plastics and greenhouse gas emissions, detailing the impacts of each stage of the plastic cycle from fracking and cracking of hydrocarbons to create plastic feedstocks, to off gassing during their usable life, and the disposal of plastics through burial, incineration, and as litter. Motivated to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions, the US shut down many coal-fired power plants in recent years. However, the growing US plastics industry – this ‘New Coal’ - is on track to produce more greenhouse gas emissions than these reductions.

Please join us on Wednesday, February 23 at Noon (Alaska Time) for a lunch and learn presentation by the authors of this report. This topic is very relevant for Alaskans. Alaska and the circumpolar Arctic are warming at three times as fast as the rest of the planet as a whole, disproportionately and adversely affecting Alaskans’ food security, transportation, and cultures.

More details can be found at our website - https://www.akaction.org/february-che-alaska/
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