Plastic straws no longer a top concern on coastline litter list

Ocean Wise recently released their our annual Dirty Dozen, and in 2023, plastic straws did not make the list—for the first time in a decade.

Every year, Ocean Wise hosts beach cleanups across Canada and documents the garbage they find on beaches across the country. From this data, they develop a list of the most common trash items, known as the "Dirty Dozen." 

For over a decade, the same 12 items kept showing up on the list, with cigarette butts usually on top, closely followed by several single-use plastic items such as bags, bottles, and straws. However, for the first time in a decade, one of these items did not make the list, and members of Ocean Wise believe that government laws banning certain plastic items might be the cause. 

The Weather Network had a chance to find out what that item was and what further steps the team is taking to reduce the amount of single-use plastic we find on our beaches.

(Header image courtesy of Getty Images/stock photo)