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Get Involved: Turtle Island Restoration Network

Coffee cups, Plastic clamshells. Carryout containers. People use and discard these items daily, with nary a thought about the impact of their actions. Yet the impact is enormous. Disposable foodware generates significant and visible waste and pollution. In addition to mounting evidence of its toxicity to human health, the process of cleaning up and disposing of this trash costs municipalities and taxpayers more than a billion dollars each year, and the costs of disposables to society are likely much, much greater.

Perpetual, in conjunction with Turtle Island Restoration (TIRN) are working toward the solution here in

Galveston. Led by a team with a collective 20 years of experience in the reuse space, Perpetual has the know-how to create a world where ‘disposable’ items have been replaced by reusable ones, with citywide systems in place to facilitate reuse.

Starting with foodware, and eventually moving on to other disposables, Perpetual provides the expertise to design and implement successful reuse systems that are replicable, adaptable, scalable, and efficient. Such systems bring social, health, economic, and environmental benefits to all.

Perpetual and TIRN held a meeting late 2022 to discuss the potential to bring a reusable foodware program to Galveston that would be informed by a community-led design process. Reusable foodware programs for take-out food and beverages have the potential to be better for the environment than single-use plastics, create good local jobs, be economically sustainable over time, help Galveston manage waste generation and collection, and be cost competitive with disposables for local businesses. “Perpetual believes Galveston would be an ideal place for a city-wide reusable foodware system. It would bring a range of benefits for the local community and environment and it provides Galveston with an opportunity to demonstrate leadership on reducing single-use plastic waste,” said Ellie Moss, Executive Director of Perpetual.

TIRN’s Joanie Steinhaus says, “This is a 3-year process and we are in the very preliminary phases. We are moving quickly though and are on track to major success with support from business owners and community members.”

Live like a local and get involved in your community’s growth and evolution. Look for the next meeting coming in late January or early February. Check the Turtle Island Restoration Network for more details. Tell your friends and get involved!

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