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Explore, Enjoy and Protect

Houston Regional Group - News
Bayou Banner Article, June/July 2012 -
IT'S ONLY AN ORANGE PEEL!

"IT'S ONLY AN ORANGE PEEL!"

- May 25 - IT'S ONLY AN ORANGE PEEL!

I have led outings for the Houston Sierra Club for 18 years. In all that time I cannot tell you how often I have heard the statement "It's only an orange peel", when I tell people to pack out the trash that they packed in. The attitude that this statement represents and it's end result hit me hard recently.

I drove down to Galveston, crossed on that lovely ferry (saw dolphins and pelicans!), and arrived at the North Jetties on Bolivar Peninsula. The Houston Sierra Club, in conjunction with many other groups and individuals, was participating in a trash bash - an effort to keep our beaches, rivers, and lakes clean of litter and garbage.

As we got our garbage bags and fanned out on the beach near the jetties the plethora of trash and garbage was amazing and incredible. Everything plastic that's ever been made in every color of the rainbow was displayed on top of and buried in the sandy beach and Sargasso Weed. Bottles, containers, miscellaneous and unknown parts, baggies, plastic packaging - peek into your own garbage can and you would recognize this refuse.

Then it hit me! A child says, "It's only an orange peel", a mother says, "It's only a six-pack", a father says "It's only laundry basket", a fisherman says, "It's only a bag of garbage", a company that supplies offshore rigs says "It's only a load of trash" and our beaches, rivers, and lakes become trash dumps.

It goes on and on. And it all started with our attitude about one little orange peel. We say we want clean beaches, rivers, and lakes. But do our actions match our attitude? Think about it.

Brandt Mannchen, 2012


Last updated:  11/20/2011.   Content 1999-2011 by the Sierra Club.