Latest Posts

Organize a Brand Audit

Let’s reveal who’s really responsible for plastic pollution Help bring accountability to Big Plastic polluters by organizing a brand audit in your community! This massive, rolling citizen science project with the #breakfreefromplastic movement spans from San Francisco to Surabaya. It’s a great way to clean up your community while participating in the global movement working to end plastic pollution. Ready to...

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Supporting the Right to Repair

Things break. Wear and tear is normal, but throwing away otherwise functional devices shouldn’t be. Rather than sending broken items to the landfill or paying companies an arm and a leg to fix them, we think you have the right to repair broken devices yourself. For years, our friends at iFixit have been helping people do that. They provide repair...

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Did Nestlé Use the Shutdown for Good PR?

The impacts of the government shutdown on the nation’s national parks have been widely reported: overflowing bathrooms, decimated habitat, and widespread litter resulted in parks that remained open without staff oversight and management.1 In response, individuals, organizations, and corporations have volunteered to help out with the clean-up. One of these is Nestlé Waters North America, which released this statement last week:...

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Give me Convenience or Give Me Death

At this point in modern life, we likely touch plastic more than we touch our loved ones.  Plastic has become a ubiquitous symbol of globalization. Most of us have a limited relationship to this material, experiencing it only from purchase to disposal.  But there is a whole story that exists before and after when we come into contact with it,...

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Debunking the Michigan Container Deposit Repeal Bill

This week, members of Michigan’s lame duck legislature introduced a bill that could repeal Michigan’s 40-year-old bottle deposit law. If passed, the bill would undermine a successful bottling collection program that has recovered an average of 96% of bottles sold. What’s a container deposit? Container deposits are a system designed to reduce pollution by incentivizing the return of bottles. It adds...

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How to stop half a trillion bottles polluting our planet each year

If you go to the hospital with a sharp pain in your left shoulder — a well-known indicator of a heart attack — any doctor worth her salt will start by investigating the health of your heart, not just your shoulder. Similarly, when it comes to addressing the plastics crisis, it’s time we think like doctors and seek solutions to...

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What we learned from 100 cleanups around the world – and what comes next

Earlier this month, hundreds of Changemakers from The Story of Stuff Project community gathered at beaches, parks, and other public spaces from Melbourne to Mumbai. Their mission was simple: collect plastic trash in the environment, tally the brands that appeared, and grow the global movement to hold Big Plastic accountable.  What we achieved together Over the course of the Global...

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The Campaign for Fresh Water in Michigan

Story of Stuff partner FLOW has announced model legislation to protect Michigan’s public waters from unauthorized privatization.  Earlier this year, we released A Tale of Two Cities, a short documentary telling the story of Michigan’s battle for the public control of water. We explored the threat of privatization through the eyes of local activists in Flint, facing an ongoing water...

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Global Week of Action: Host a Brand Audit!

Thanks for your interest in hosting a brand audit as part of the #breakfreefromplastic global week of action, September 10-16 2018. This page is intended to share more about what a brand audit is, how it fits into the global strategy to end plastic pollution, and what’s involved in organizing a brand audit in your community. If you’d prefer, you can...

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The Plastic Straw, Starbucks and a Movement at a Crossroads

The effort to eliminate plastic straws has recently become a darling among ocean plastic advocates, even permeating pop culture and the broader public consciousness. Everywhere in social media, images of plastic straws in the environment or corrupting wildlife are dominating Facebook and Instagram feeds, reaching far beyond the silos of the traditional stakeholder groups concerned with plastic pollution. We’re seeing...

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RELEASE: Settlement Ends Nestlé’s Expired ‘Zombie’ Permit

Strawberry Creek, Wildlife Remain at Risk from Commercial Exploitation SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — Federal officials and conservation groups reached an agreement today that will finally end Nestlé Corp.’s ability to rely on a permit that expired 30 years ago to siphon water from the San Bernardino National Forest for its massive bottled-water operation. The company’s diversion has severely reduced water...

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Why Nestlé abandoned its plans in Pennsylvania

Last month, Nestlé Waters walked away from a bottling plant proposal in Centre County, Pennsylvania. The world’s largest water bottler was looking at constructing a new plant and well that would have taken 150 million gallons a year from groundwater sources in the Spring Creek watershed. Nestlé would have more than doubled the amount of water currently withdrawn from this...

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Introducing the WATER Act

On the four-year anniversary of the fateful day when city officials switched Flint, Michigan’s water source to the toxic Flint River, Representatives Keith Ellison and Ro Khanna introduced a crucial piece of water justice legislation: The Water Affordability, Transparency, Equity and Reliability (WATER) Act.1 At a time when the White House has formally suspended a major Obama-era clean water regulation2...

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Great Lakes Alliance Responds to Nestlé Permit

In early April, Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) approved Nestlé’s permit application to withdraw 450 gallons per minute from a well outside of Evart, Michigan. During the open comment period last year, 80,000 state residents said ‘No’ to multinational Nestlé’s corporate water grab and the environmental damage that is drying up rivers and defying common sense. Despite the overwhelming...

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Shedding Responsibility: The Microfiber Epidemic

A few days ago, The Story of Stuff Project was in Sacramento to testify on our bill addressing the problem of microfiber pollution – tiny particles of plastic shed from synthetic fabrics when we machine-wash our clothes. Just as we did with our campaign to tackle microbeads, we are taking a legislative approach to begin to address the problem of...

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