by Becca Stallings

If you’re concerned about the single-use plastic (SUP) problem, you’ve probably already taken steps to reduce SUP in your own daily life, even during the pandemic. What else can you do, at a time when interacting with other people, businesses, and public facilities is unusually difficult?

PASUP members have found some projects collecting and studying SUP in our environment, challenging us to help clean up our planet in general as well as our own impact upon it:

  • The Pittsburgh 10K Summer Litter Pickup Challenge aims to collect and document 10,000 pieces of garbage from Pittsburgh’s public spaces in the summer of 2020. It is part of the “No Plastic, Please” project of Humane Action Pittsburgh.
  • Litterati is an app for anyone (Pittsburgh or elsewhere) to document trash we’ve collected and properly disposed. It collects data that can be used to motivate changes in environmental policies.
  • Nurdle Patrol is a project documenting the tiny plastic pellets (nurdles) from which SUP products are made. Because of their small size, nurdles often escape before reaching their destination, wreak havoc in the environment, and wash up on beaches around the world. Even if you won’t be visiting the ocean anytime soon, you might find nurdles along the shore of a local river or lake. Learn more about The Great Global Nurdle Hunt!

Do you know of other ways Pittsburghers can get involved in reducing SUP and raising awareness about it? Please share in the comments.