Plastic-Free Great Lakes

An Advocacy Toolkit to Make a Difference In Your Community

We all love and depend on clean water. Unfortunately, plastic is polluting our waterways — in the Great Lakes and around the world.

Plastic pollution comes in many shapes and sizes. And it’s everywhere: beaches, rivers, lakes, and even drinking water. In fact, researchers estimate that over 22 million pounds of plastic enter the Great Lakes every year.

Communities spend lots of money each year to collect and manage plastic pollution. Across the Great Lakes region, we’ve seen successful advocacy efforts that help communities stop plastic in its tracks. Whether it’s pushing for local or state policies, or innovative programs to prevent or reduce plastic pollution, you can make a difference in your community.

In this toolkit, you’ll find lessons from all levels of government across the Great Lakes region, and sample policies designed to reduce plastic pollution. We also provide you with the tools you need to make an impact.

You can also download each piece of the toolkit separately. You’ll find a variety of helpful resources to drive change in your community and beyond, including: 

Tools for Building Public Support

Tools for Communicating with Decision Makers

Explore In-Depth

Alliance experts and partners at Access Living and Shedd Aquarium discuss inclusive policy-making and plastic-reduction advocacy efforts — listen here.

Take Action to Stop Plastic Pollution

Your voice, when combined with thousands of advocates around the lakes, can make a difference! Our action center makes it easy for you to contact decision makers.

Visit Our Action Center