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March 05, 2013

Plastics Unwrapped Programs

Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture
Through May 27, 2013

Seattle –This spring, the Burke Museum offers several programs on plastics as part of the Plastics Unwrapped exhibit. With events ranging from a plastic bag ban debate to a recycling fair, explore why plastics are so convenient and beneficial to use, and what happens after we throw them away.

Plastics Unwrapped Programs and Events:

Art for Social Change Craft Workshops – Bottles and Bottle Caps
Saturday, March 30, 10 am – 2 pm
with Zero Waste Seattle and Art for Social Change
Included with museum admission; FREE for Burke members

Everyone is invited to join the fun and help build a kid-friendly giant trash monster out of recycled bottles and bottle caps. Meet the Bag Monster at 10 am and at 12:30 pm when this Yeti-like creature makes a rare appearance to help us discover ways we can decrease our negative impact on the planet. And then go to the Fremont Solstice Parade and see your bottle creation come to life!

Plastic: A Toxic Love Story, with Susan Freinkel
Wednesday, April 3, 7 pm
Kane Hall 120, UW Campus

FREE for all, pre-registration recommended at www.burkemuseum.org/events
A century into our love affair with plastic, the romance is starting to fray. Plastics draw on dwindling fossil fuels, leach harmful chemicals, litter landscapes, and destroy marine life. We’re trapped in an unhealthy dependence—a toxic relationship. Join Susan Freinkel, author of the book Plastic: A Toxic Love Story, as she treks through the history, science, and global economy to assess the real impact of plastic on our lives.

 Ms. Freinkel’s work appears in: The New York Times; Discover; Smithsonian; Reader’s Digest; OnEarth; Health; and Real Simple. In 2005, she was awarded an Alicia Patterson Fellowship, and in 2008 a National Outdoor Book Award.

This talk is the first in a weekly seminar series from the Burke Museum and the UW Program on the Environment called “Plastics Unwrapped: The Good, the Bad, the Debate.”

Plastics Unwrapped: The Good, the Bad, the Debate
Wednesdays, 6 pm, April 10 – May 22, 2013
Burke Museum
$5 at the door; FREE for UW students, staff, faculty with UW ID

The Burke Museum and the UW Program on the Environment seminar series will continue with lectures and panel discussions each Wednesday at the Burke Museum at 6 pm, covering such topics as the benefits of plastics, the challenges of recycling and reuse, the effect of plastic waste on marine life, and the international debate on electronic plastics. Come to one talk, or come to all; all lectures are open to the public!

  • April 10, The Benefits of Plastic – A panel discussion with Brenda Fukai-Allison (Boeing), Jennifer Zumsteg (Harborview Medical Center), and Thomas Malone (MicroGREEN Polymers)
  • April 17, Plastics Recycling and Composting: Successes and Challenges – A panel discussion with Tom Watson (King County Recycling and Environmental Services), Shirli Axelrod (Seattle Public Utilities) and Heather Trim (Zero Waste Seattle)
  • April 24, Plastics in the Ocean – with Giora Proskurowski (UW Oceanography)
  • May 1, Toxics in Consumer Plastics – with Sheela Sathyanarayana (UW Pediatrics)
  • May 8, Ban the Bag: the Grocery Bag Debate – with Katrina Rosen (Environment Washington) and Laurie Davies  (Washington State Department of Ecology)
  • May 22, Electronic Plastics: The National and International Management Debate – with Jim Puckett (Basel Action Network)

Recycling Fair
Saturday, April 13, 2013 10 am – 3 pm

Burke Museum
Included with museum admission; FREE for Burke members

The Recycling Fair will showcase public and private recycling solutions and methods from throughout the Puget Sound region. Learn the life cycle of plastic, what to do with that odd bit of trash, and how to behave when confronted with a “recycling desert.” Also attend “Trashion” shows with beautiful clothing made from discarded plastics. Participating organizations include Seattle Public Utilities, Total Reclaim, Cedar Grove, UW Recycling, Waste Management, and many more.

High resolution images available, contact burkepr@uw.edu

Plastics Unwrapped is organized by the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture with support from: The Boeing Company, University of Washington, Cedar Grove, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Special Grant Program in the Chemical Sciences, Seattle Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs, Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, Society of Plastics Engineers, Horizons Foundation, and Waste Management. Media Sponsor: KUOW.

(206) 543-9762; FAX (206) 616-1274

Photo courtesy of the Burke Museum.