Plastic bag problems explored at Peninsula College’s next Studium Generale

PORT ANGELES — Despite environmental efforts across the nation, Americans use about 60,000 plastic bags every five minutes. So where do they end up?

Find out at two events Thursday, Jan. 4, at Peninsula College. Both are free and open to the public.

Melinda Gelder and a panel of local residents will discuss “Our Plastic Planet: The Real Truth and How We Can Change” during Studium Generale at 12:35 p.m. in the college’s Little Theater, 1502 E Lauridsen Blvd.

Gelder’s presentation will focus on disposable plastics, their use and waste, and the effects they have on the environment and on Americans.

“We will end with an invitation to become more active in our own community on helping to reduce disposable plastic use and help make us a responsible, more sustainable ocean-side community,” Gelder said.

At 7 the same evening, Magic of Cinema will offer a free screening of the documentary film “Bag It” in Maier Performance Hall.

The award-winning documentary follows “everyman” Jeb Berrier as he navigates the plastic world. Jeb is not a radical environmentalist, but an average American who decides to take a closer look at the country’s cultural love affair with plastics.

Are plastic bags really necessary? What are plastic bags made from? What happens to plastic bags after they are discarded?

What he learns quickly grows far beyond plastic bags.

Co-sponsored by the Port Angeles Plastic Reduction Coalition, the Ocean Guardian program and the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, the screening will be followed by a panel discussion.

For more information contact Kate Reavey at kreavey@pencol.edu.

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