You’ve probably seen commercials on TV for Sandals Resorts in Jamaica and across other Caribbean islands. The white sand, the beautiful blue water and the smiling, happy people make it seem like Heaven on Earth. Well, it’s getting even better! The resort recently announced a new initiative to stop the use of single-use plastics like straws and drink stirrers in an effort to help curb ocean pollution.
Pollution Prevention Week
Sandals Resorts coincided the announcement with Pollution Prevention Week in an effort to raise awareness of the dangers of ocean pollution. The luxury resort conglomerate operates 19 resorts across seven Caribbean islands and it estimates the ban on single-use plastics will prevent more than 21 million straws and stirrers from ending up in landfills and the ocean each year. The plastic items will be replaced by paper straws and other more environmentally-friendly options.
Andy Stewart, Deputy Chairman of Sandals Resorts International, affirmed the group’s commitment to protecting local flora and fauna.
“Love is at the crux of all Sandals Resorts, and this love extends to the oceans and communities around them,” he said. “We care deeply about our commitment to preserving both marine wildlife and human health within the many beautiful islands we’re connected to. Eliminating single-use plastic straws and stirrers is only the beginning of our journey toward helping create a plastic-free sea in the region we call home”.
Plastic Pollution in Our Oceans
Sandals Resorts is just the latest major vacation and travel company to curb single-use plastics with Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International and Virgin Voyages also making an effort to be more environmentally conscious. Plastics in our oceans isn’t limited to just straws and stirrers. Plastic bags are a serious concern as well, especially for sea turtles who often mistake bags for jellyfish, a major food source for the species.
Efforts to reduce plastic use are showing signs of progress, but it will take a collective effort from everyone to make a really positive impact!