Thursday, September 18, 9:30 AM
Rockport City Hall, 622 Market Street
The Rockport City Council’s Environmental and Water Quality Committee will deliberate and act upon a possible recommendation to the City Council on our Skip the Plastic effort. This will be the second time this committee has included us on their agenda and your participation is needed.
Your voice and attendance is important to show the Committee and the City Council that a significant number of residents care about the aesthetic and environmental health issues associated with single-use plastic shopping bags and want something done.
Agenda for the 18th: http://www.cityofrockport.com/documents/13/26/09-18-2014_201409120826532907.pdf
Thursday, September 18, 5:00 PM
Port Aransas City Hall, 710 W. Avenue A at Cutoff Road
The Port Aransas City Council will decide which elements they want in their plastic bag ban ordinance before voting on it in their October meeting. Come show your support for this bold step that will result in a cleaner city, better beaches and bag free Gulf waters!!
Our September Bag Heroes are Joan and Scott Holt, marine scientists from the University of Texas Marine Science Institute and avid birders. Now retired, they spend their time birding in Port Aransas at the Joan and Scott Holt Paradise Pond or traveling to exotic places for wildlife viewing.
Like many other Port Aransas residents, the Holts are hoping that their City Council will make a bold statement on September 18th when they vote on a plastic bag ban ordinance.
“Minimizing our use of plastic bags is just another aspect of our environment-friendly philosophy and it is something we think about every time we go shopping. We would be very proud if Port Aransas would step up and take the lead in the Coastal Bend in the effort to reduce the use of plastic bags”.
Come listen to one or both panel discussions next Thursday, September 4th, related to the “Oceans of Plastic” exhibit currently at the Art Museum of South Texas. The panels will be entitled “State of our Wetlands and Gulf and the Presence of Plastics and Other Debris”:
10 AM to 2 PM at Harte Research Institute, TAMUCC – Panel participants will include Dr. Wes Tunnell, NOAA’s Marine Debris Program Manager and Regional Coordinator, and Tony Amos of UTMSI.
7 to 9 PM at the Art Museum of South Texas – A reception will precede the panel. The panel will include the speakers listed above plus Mike Garver of Texans for Clean Water, the organization we are partnering with to advocate for a statewide deposit/refund program for beverage containers.
A.P. “Freddy” Ramirez, P.E., is on the Board of Directors for Bike Texas, which encourages and promotes bicycling, increased safety and improved conditions for cyclists. His company, Pendgo Timing, manages running, cycling and paddling races, including the Paddle for Parkinsons race coming up on August 30th. Freddy has pushed race organizers to move away from cheap, disposable bags for entrants’ race packets to sturdy, reusable ones imprinted with sponsors’ logos.
He and his wife live on Corpus Christi Bay and enjoy the peaceful setting, especially on calm mornings when dolphins feed along the shore. Unfortunately, he relates how plastic bags and beverage containers are flushed out into the bay through a nearby storm drain outfall every time it rains.
Having lived in Austin, Freddy is accustomed to bringing his own bags when going to the store. “We shopped at Whole Foods and brought 3 to 4 reusable bags every time. We have this big insulated one that we bought years ago and it keeps all our milk, chilled and frozen foods cold until we get home.” Like our other Bag Heroes, Freddy shows that bringing your own bags is easy once you get in the habit.
New research by marine scientists is helping to answer the questions of how much plastic is in the world’s oceans and where it’s going. Scroll down to view global maps and watch a very informative video.
Voestalpine, the Austrian company that’s building an iron smelting plant near Corpus Christi Bay in Portland, donated $1,500 today to Skip the Plastic. State-of-the-art technologies will help the plant to significantly minimize water demand, reduce the amount of waste produced and hopefully achieve the goal of zero air emissions. With a strong focus on the environment and sustainability, Voestlapine is setting the bar for other Coastal Bend companies.
Matt Pastl of Voestalpine stands on the right in the photo, with Neil McQueen of Skip the Plastic on the left. Despite appearances, they don’t have the same barber.
Jace Tunnell is a marine biologist who understands that we need to be good stewards of our local bays if they’re going to thrive. On an average weekend, you can find his family spending the day at the beach, camping in a state park or enjoying the scenery on Corpus Christi’s bayfront.
As a parent helping to raise two children, he wants to pass on his sense of stewardship and help foster a strong feeling of pride in the city they call home. What’s the connection between city pride, the bay and reusable shopping bags? “I want to set a good example for my kids about making Corpus Christi an even better place to live and protecting the beauty of this great city. Bringing reusable bags when going shopping is one way to do this.”