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This Campaign Shows How Your Plastic Straws Suck the Life Out of Ocean Animals

Greenpeace Canada makes its point with stark imagery.



This Campaign Shows How Your Plastic Straws Suck the Life Out of Ocean Animals
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The race to ban plastic straws is on in earnest and is an initiative with wings, with brands and municipalities jumping on board.

Starbucks announced earlier this month its plan to phase out single-use plastic straws by 2020, replacing them with a lid where straws are unnecessary. In September, Burger King U.K. will use biodegradable straws in its restaurants and stateside, Alaska Airlines is beginning to end the distribution of plastic stirrers and citrus picks. The airline used 22 billion last year and its home, Seattle, became the first major city to ban plastic straws and utensils.

This stark series of ads Greenpeace Canada created illustrate just how obviously harmful plastic straws are to aquatic animals. Created by Rethink in Toronto, the ads are hard to swallow yet were designed to prompt businesses to reconsider the use of straws.

A fish, turtle and bird are inside a drink, with a straw coming out of their mouths. “Don’t suck the life from our oceans” reads each ad.

Although the campaign singles out straws as harmful, Greenpeace Canada looks to draw attention to the ill effects of throwaway plastic in general, including lids and cups.

The talk of the industry is squarely about ocean plastic, a topic that has netted significant exposure and a Cannes Lions Grand Prix win for “Trash Isles” last month — and its avatar at the moment is straws. Indeed, something to ponder over your next iced coffee.


Advertising Agency: Rethink, Toronto
Creative Director / Art Director: Joel Holtby
Creative Director / Copywriter: Mike Dubrick
Creative Director: Aaron Starkman
Photographer: Instill Image Co.
Accounts: Caleb Goodman, Laura Cavalcanti
Print Producer: Narine Artinian
Strategist: Hannah Newport