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The Final Straw

The facts about single-use plastic straws:

  • average lifespan is less than 30 minutes;

  • Americans use 390 to 500 million single use plastic straws per day - enough to wrap around the earth 2.5 times;

  • plastic straws take 200-500 years to decompose; and

  • plastic straws are not recyclable.

Turtle Island Restoration Network (TIRN), an ocean conservation group in Galveston is joining a worldwide movement to protect the environment from an increasingly urgent threat: single-use plastic in our ocean! TIRN launched ‘The Final Straw Galveston’ to eliminate a source of single-use plastic pollution by encouraging business and individuals in Galveston to go plastic-straw free. Single-use plastic has a devastating impact on our environment, our ocean, and ultimately— human health. “The Final Straw Galveston” is an opportunity for local businesses and individuals to be leaders in our community and help protect our environment.

The Final Straw Galveston provides registered businesses with resources to help them transition away from single-use plastic straws, including the option to purchase reusable straws. TIRN will issue signs to participating businesses that indicate they joined the movement. A map of participating businesses—several of which are already listed—will be available on TIRN’s website.

Many bars and restaurants in Galveston are already setting the example of what it means to be a sustainable leader in our community, and it’s as simple as only offering straws by request. By doing so, your establishment will be part of the solution. Among participating businesses is the 23rd Street Station Piano Bar, which has pledged to discontinue the use of straws completely. "The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it," said owner Robert Swan. "We are only one business, we can not do everything, but we can do something."

In March 2019, Galveston’s City Council unanimously passed a resolution encouraging restaurants to withhold plastic straws unless customers specifically ask for them. The resolution also encourages businesses to offer straws made of paper, plant fiber, or other material more biodegradable than plastic. “The City Council of the City of Galveston gives its strongest recommendation to all those entities in the food and beverage industry to refrain from providing plastic straws and/or stirrers to their customers except on their specific request,” the resolution states.

Turtle Island Restoration Network invites all businesses and individuals in Galveston to be part of the movement to eliminate single-use plastic straws. To register your business for The Final Straw Galveston or to take the pledge to end your use of single-use plastic straws, visit

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