Scientists are experimenting with plastic-eating bacteria and people are worried. We know ocean plastic is a problem, but is unleashing a bacteria that could eat it really a good idea? What if it eats what it isn’t supposed to? It turns out the real promise of this tech isn’t dropping it into the ocean to let it eat plastic bottles. Instead, it could make recycling easier and more profitable – creating a desperately needed better financial incentive for companies and people to recycle now that China has stopped taking the world’s trash.
The larger point is, when the headlines offer up a story that seems to be worthy of outrage or panic or at least concern — it’s up to us (and you!) to dig a bit deeper, read a bit more and perhaps panic a bit less. When you do, you’ll probably uncover the real story, and reserve your outrage for when it really matters.