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Let’s Talk About Those Terrible Paper Straws

Before you celebrate the end of plastic straws, consider this new study that shows that paper straws contain forever chemicals. Great.

Belgian researchers tested 39 brands of straws PFAS or poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). These are called forever chemicals because your body takes a long time to process them out of your system.

Researchers found that these chemicals were more prominent in straws made from paper or bamboo and more likely to be found in the paper straws.

Plastic straws became the target of environmentalists after a 2015 video of a sea turtle with a straw up its nose. Environmentalists champion banning them even though they only make up 0.03 percent of the 9 million tons of plastic waste. But did we do any better moving to paper given that these straws may be toxic?

Also consider, that paper is made from deforestation. Is that better? When California banned plastic bags, carbon emissions went up due to the energy needed to produce more paper bags. This is a good example of how climate policies can be so sorely misguided.

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Redacted is an independent platform, unencumbered by external factors or restrictive policies, on which Clayton and Natali Morris bring you quality information, balanced reporting, constructive debate, and thoughtful narratives.