The next time you find yourself walking through the aisles of your favorite local supermarket or retail store, consider picking up a few items just to determine whether they were made in the United States or in another foreign country. In all likelihood, you will find that many of the items you investigate were made in other nations than our own, which begs the question “How did they all get here?” These products were most assuredly wrapped in several forms of packaging in order to be well insulated during their trip to America, and they were likely placed on various forms of transportation just to get from one point of origin to the next. These two considerations on the environmental impact of foreign purchases combined with the fact that many foreign countries do not regulate production like the United States are three major talking points every environment loving American needs to consider when deciding to buy American.
When we ship products overseas to various factories for assembly, we are required to use numerous layers of protective casings to ensure they are well protected on their travels. These layers include plastic bags, layers of Styrofoam, packing “peanuts”, and other materials. Obviously, after the packing and transportation of these products have occurred, these materials have to go somewhere. Most will end up in landfills! Therefore, the less traveling a product does, the less packaging it consumes and is therefore better for the environment.
The next step a product takes while traveling from one location to another involves being placed in some form of transport, whether that be a car, train, plane or automobile. If this product was not designed in the United States, the likelihood it will travel using many of these transportation systems increases exponentially. Ultimately, the fuel and other chemical offshoots from this travel impact the environment in a negative manner. So, the next time you purchase a product made in America, rest easy knowing that the product you’re purchasing will not travel nearly as far and will therefore make less of an impact on the environment.
Lastly, one must consider the regulations that other countries ignore or take shortcuts around in order to meet increasing production demands from the United States. As has been mentioned in other articles, when ownership is not given over a product, those working on said product are oftentimes less invested in its success. Therefore, shortcuts happen and these shortcuts often impact the environment due to the fact that many individuals view our environment as less important.
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As you can see from our discussion above, making the choice to buy American made products can positively impact the environment not only in our own country but in those of others. Our dedication to buying American will ultimately pay off when we see fewer packing products in landfills, carbon emissions reduced, and foreign countries bulking up health and safety precautions. All this can occur simply by buying American made products! GO U.S.!
What do you think are the biggest benefits of buying American?