In the United States alone, it is estimated that we go through hundreds of millions of plastic straws a day (according to the Plastic Pollution Coalition).

Were you aware they cannot be recycled?

Straw Forward Logo

Over the course of a year, single use plastics end up polluting our streams, lakes, rivers, and oceans–including straws. They damage fragile ecosystems, entangle marine animals, kill wildlife, and, in the long run are actually entering the food-chain upon which we rely.

The Straw Forward project is an effort led by Pittsburgh restaurants and other establishments that will bring attention to the global issue of plastic pollution and engage people in meaningful conversations about single-use plastic waste.

Plastic straws, while currently drawing a great deal of national media attention, are only the tip of the iceberg comprising the negative impact of all kinds of plastics, ranging from consumer packaging to toys to commercial fishing nets.

However, it’s important to remember that plastic straws are a necessary tool for people with certain disabilities and medical conditions to consume food and drinks, so it’s essential to ensure the needs of the disability rights community are kept in these straw conversations.

We are working with the creative team at Shift Collaborative to transform all of these “saved” plastic straws into a large public display. The finished one-of-a-kind Straw Forward art project will be displayed in a prominent place in Pittsburgh later this year.

Throughout the summer and early fall, the below participating businesses will be collecting used plastic straws.

Participating Restaurants & Businesses

Thank you to our friends at Patagonia Pittsburgh for their partnership in being a public drop-off site for plastic straws.

Thank you to our friends at Corner Mercantile  , GreenLight JuiceShuBrew, and RiverView Café for donating their
remaining plastic straws as they transition to compostable ones.

More than 60% of Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurants have adopted an “Offer First or “By Request Only” policy or have switched to straws made of paper, stainless steel, or bamboo.

Straw Forward Press

More on Plastic

Plastic pollution facts, as well as what an individual can do to help – here.

Interesting read on new findings regarding the Great Pacific Garbage Patch – here.

Powerful infographics regarding plastic pollution and usage – here.

Plastic facts from Earth Day – here