In case you missed it: Thoughtful, newsworthy comments from industry professionals, consumers and policymakers.
"We must put aside short-term national gain to prevent long-term global catastrophe. Conserving our oceans and using them sustainably is preserving life itself."
— United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on protecting and preserving the world's oceans, as reported by AP via The New York Times. June 8 was World Oceans Day, which focused on preventing plastic waste from reaching the ocean. This week was also the U.N. Ocean Conference.
"For our work in the deep ocean to succeed in the long run, it’s crucial that governments and other organizations speed up their efforts to mitigate the sources of the problem we aim to resolve."
— The Ocean Cleanup Founder and CEO Boyan Slat, who wants to deploy ocean-cleaning technology, on keeping the ocean free of waste by targeting upstream sources. Researchers with The Ocean Cleanup found that anywhere between 1.15 million and 2.41 million metric tons of plastic reach the ocean from inland populations each year.
"Is a recycled plastic ever going to be something people think is a luxury? If they don’t notice it and if they feel that living on this planet longer is a luxury, then yes, to me that’s my idea of luxury."
— Fashion designer Stella McCartney on a new line of suits from her brand that are made out of recycled plastic, diverting some plastic from the waste stream, as reported in The New York Times. She's partnering with Parley for the Oceans to use a "yarn fiber" made from recycled plastic.
"Well, where’s ‘away?’ ‘Away’ is some mega-landfill somewhere, and they’re filling up."
— Executive Director of the U.S. Composting Council Frank Fanciosi, on consumer attitude toward waste disposal, composting and throwing things "away," as reported by Philly.com. A dining hall at West Chester University is working under an EPA-funded pilot program to improve composting.
"Within that transition is the recognition of the shared ethos we have to help improve our environment and not to just help the present but to help the future. The line isn’t a straight line, it’s a process of continual improvement."
— Pittsburgh Chief Resiliency Officer Grant Ervin in an interview with Smart Cities Dive on his city's transition from a coal and steel industrial town to a sustainability, healthcare and tech hub. The City of Bridges has been in the news ever since President Trump announced his intent to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement and said he was elected to "represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris."