Travelers against Plastic (aka TAP) celebrated its 2nd year by honoring World Water Day on the 22nd at The Adventure HUB in Seattle. The event was in conjunction with ATTA Connect and hosted by Crooked Trails, Wildland Adventures and Evergreen Escapes (three Seattle based tour organizations). We had just over 25 people there mostly representing local operators and companies like REI.
So what are we celebrating? It’s been an exciting year at TAP. We have garnered a great deal of attention for our efforts to eliminate disposable plastic water bottles from the world of travel. 495 individuals have signed the pledge to start carrying their own reusable containers and clean their own water while abroad. We have also had 130 operators from a variety of countries as far away as Russia, Venezuela, Namibia, Nepal, Chile, Indonesia and Peru. The list goes on. Our Facebook page has reached over 1000 likes. It’s been inspiring to receive stories from operators around the world as they discuss their challenges and successes with regards to making the switch to being more sustainable and getting rid of the plastic.
TAP has also made a switch; from Kleen Kanteen to Liberty Bottles. Liberty Bottles was featured at the event with Stacie Able from Liberty sharing the process they use to make bottles. We have the brand new TAP bottles just off the press this week and they look great! Why did we switch? The main reason is that we wanted to really walk the walk when it came to sustainability and Liberty is made in a no waste facility. They even have a strong partnership with UPS to reduce their carbon foot print when shipping. We also love the idea of supporting bottles that are made in the US (all other steel and aluminum bottles are made in China). The paint and graphics are gorgeous with unlimited colors and designs.
Evergreen Escapes Babs talked to the group about their efforts at going green and eliminating plastics. She talked about how some clients think that drinking from a used water bottle is disgusting. But she said, she explains it like this “Well the wine glass you are drinking from was also used before like all the water and wine glasses you have used in restaurants. We clean them the same way.” They also work hard to help clients understand their environmental ethics, which is usually enough.
Be sure to take the TAP pledge and keep the planet green when you travel.
What an incredible honor to receive one of this year's Sustainable Seattle's Resource Impact Awards. As Paul Shoemaker (MC and Founding President of Social Venture Partners International) put it, Seattle went 'Beast-Mode' on sustainability in 2014. This made it very difficult for judges to select just one winner in several of the categories, something unheard of in past years.
We would like to congratulate each of this year’s nominees and winners, as well as say thank you to Sustainable Seattle for recognizing TAP and all of the hard work we have put in to helping end the use of disposable plastic bottles in the tourism industry.
Shoemaker made several Seahawk metaphors throughout the night, one specifically to introduce the Resource Impact nominees. He remarked that this category is analogous to the 110 'yards after contact' made by Marshawn Lynch in the NFC Championship. The work we do to tackle such a monumental environmental problem, is in a way similar to fighting for that first down after a massive linebacker has come at you full speed with only one purpose, to take you down.
Our ability to rush for those last few yards needed to keep the play alive can only be accomplished with the support of our TAP communities both locally and abroad. We want to thank all of the independent travelers as well as participating organizations that have pledged to the cause and traveling responsibly. A second thanks is in order to Sustainable Seattle for their recognition as well as their dedication to Seattle and a healthier earth.