Encinal fifth grader Evelyn emailed us earlier this week about her Girl Scout Troop’s Earth Day appearance this morning at the Menlo Park Farmer’s Market, which showcases the Troop’s environmental projects:
“On Earth Day, Sunday, April 22, from 9:00 am to 1:00, fifth-grade Girl Scout Troop #33166 from Encinal Elementary School will be at the Menlo Park Farmers’ Market with an important message and fundraiser. We are selling reusable, cloth produce bags for people to use instead of plastic when buying their fruits and vegetables. All proceeds from the sale of the bags will be donated to the Marine Mammal Center.
“In addition to the selling the bags, we hope to encourage the community not to use plastic bags and learn more about the damaging effects plastic has on our oceans.
“Our Troop has been working on its Bronze Award Project for two years and feel very strongly about protecting the ocean and the marine animals. We have participated in sea shore clean up, a restoration project in Half Moon Bay, and devoted a day at the Marine Mammal Center in Marin learning the causes and effects of plastics in our oceans.
“Here are some facts we learned that we want the community to know about:
- Average American uses 500 single-use plastic bags per year.
- Each bag is used for an average of 12 minutes.
- Bay Area residents use 3.8 billion plastic bags per year.
- Only 5% of single-use plastic bags are recycled
- Estimated 1 million plastic bags end up in the Bay each year.
- 90% of floating ocean debris is plastic and never completely degrades
- It is estimated that 11 million tons of plastic are in the North Pacific Gyre.
- Plastic trash is known to have entangled, suffocated or poisoned at least 267 animal species.”
If you haven’t hit the market yet, we encourage you to stop by their booth and buy some bags, all of which have been handmade and decorated by the girls in the Troop. They’re selling the bags for $3 a piece, two for $5. Or you or your kids can decorate your own bag for $4.