Plastic in our Oceans – LA Times Letter to the Editor

Frontier Group director Susan Rakov's letter to the editor printed in the LA Times argues that we have the tools to reduce waste.

The following letter to the editor was printed in the February 22, 2018, edition of the LA Times. The article is available on the LA Times website here.

To the editor: Readers of the Los Angeles Times’ print edition opened the Tuesday paper to an editorial page reminding us that the oceans will fill up with plastic unless we take serious action. In the Business section, we learned that the world’s largest software manufacturer is demanding restitution from a guy who is trying to keep old computers out of the waste stream.

The force of the go-go economy (which by definition is a throwaway economy) is making us behave in ways that make no sense.

We have the tools to keep plastic out of the ocean — by quitting our addiction to throwaway plastics. We have the technology to keep computers out of landfills — by making their operating software available.

We need to both reduce and reuse our stuff. And our economic and legal systems must keep up with that imperative.

Image: Flickr User-Taber Andrew Bain / Creative Commons License


Susan Rakov

Managing Director, Frontier Group; Senior Vice President, The Public Interest Network

Susan directs Frontier Group, the research and policy development center for The Public Interest Network. Frontier Group’s work informs the public discussion about degradations to the environment and public health, threats to consumer rights and democracy, and the available routes to a better future. Susan lives in Santa Barbara, California; she has two children, a husband, and a dog, and is an amateur singer/songwriter.

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