The Power to Influence
Single-use plastic items are often not disposed of correctly by consumers, and as a result end up in waterways such as bayous, lakes, and oceans. Their inhabitants, like sea turtles, for instance, have been known to get entangled in plastic items or mistake them for food, ingesting them and causing the creatures to get sick. Houston Zoo currently treats over 100 wild sea turtles annually, some of which enter the site with plastic-related damage.
Ecology Project International (EPI) is a Gallapos conservation partner for Houston Zoo. The group’s Lady Márquez comments: “Our conservation teams continue to clean up plastic ocean trash that washes ashore to protect sea turtles and other wildlife on the Galapagos islands. We are so grateful for the Zoo’s partnership and commitment to saving wildlife and reducing threats to animals in Texas and Galapagos.”
Service as Usual, but Sustainably
The transition has been developed to help ensure guests will not be inconvenienced by the change. Guests can still purchase their favourite snacks, try on apparel and purchase plush toys, but without unnecessary single-use plastic packaging. Pricing information will now be largely displayed on eco-friendly compostable hangtags, stickers or signs, with snacks being protected by compostable plastic similar to that already found in the Zoo’s cafes.
The gift shop has also transitioned to using 100% recyclable and renewable BPA-free receipt paper, with new trees being planted for each case used.
Vice president of sustainability and conservation at SSA Group, Andrew Fischer, adds: “We pride ourselves on providing quality, sustainable products and outstanding service to our Zoo guests, all while making a positive impact on the planet. We are working to extend this practice into other facilities across the United States and know that together we can take action for wildlife.”
SSA Group recently announced a partnership designed to support the mental health of its employees, following the implementation of several well-being initiatives.
Images: Jackelin Reyna/Houston Zoo.
Article originally posted on Blooloop.com.