As world travelers, we carry a lot of baggage. In a literal sense, we lug around giant backpacks and suitcases. Metaphorically, we also have to cope with the emotional baggage that, although our hearts are in the right place, traveling and tourism, in general, are not very eco-friendly.
Long plane rides make our carbon footprint soar, hordes of tourists can severely damage the health of an ecosystem, and, of course, we produce waste. Lots of it. Specifically, plastic. And where does most of that plastic end up? In our oceans.
8 million tons of plastic are annually dumped into the ocean, and with 80% of international tourism related to coastal activities, one can infer that probably a fair amount of that ocean-bound waste — plastic and otherwise — comes from tourism. Which is why it’s on us travelers to step up and be more aware of our actions. There are plenty of ways to reduce our waste, like these five methods that will help you eliminate plastic while traveling.