Skip to Content

The Health Impacts of Plastics

Plastics are in our air, water, food, and even bodies – and the science is showing that’s likely a big problem for our individual and overall health. Jane Fonda (actor and activist) speaks with Sharon Lavigne (Executive Director, Rise St. James), Leonardo Trasande, MD, MPP (Director, NYU Langone Center for the Investigation of Environmental Hazards) and Bonnie Wright (actor, writer, and climate justice advocate) about how plastics could be affecting us and what we must do about this global health crisis.

Meet Sharon Lavigne

The daughter of civil rights activists, Sharon Lavigne grew up living off the land — with gardens, cattle, pigs, and chickens — in St. James Parish, Louisiana. After a long career working as a special education teacher, she decided to dedicate herself to seeking justice for her community and founded Rise St. James, a faith-based, grassroots environmental organization, in October 2018. As Executive Director, Sharon has mobilized to stop the construction of a $1.25B manufacturing plant that would have generated one million pounds of liquid hazardous waste annually and successfully stopped the construction of a $1.25B plastics manufacturing plant alongside the Mississippi River. Sharon is a 2021 Goldman Environmental Prize winner for North America.

Meet Leo Trasande, MD, MPP

Dr. Leo Trasande is an internationally renowned leader in environmental health with research focused on the impacts of chemicals on hormones in our bodies. He also has led the way in documenting the economic costs for policy makers of failing to prevent diseases of environmental origin proactively.

Meet Bonnie Wright

Most known for her work as an actress playing Ginny Weasley in all eight of the Harry Potter films, Bonnie Wright has since stepped behind the camera. Directing shorts, commercials, and music videos, with projects having premiered at Cannes and Tribeca Film Festival. Her passion for storytelling has also led her to record several audiobooks with Audible and Penguin Random House. Bonnie is a passionate advocate for ocean health and its link to our own health. She wrote a book called ‘Go Gently Actionable Steps to Nurture Yourself and the Planet’ that was published last year. The book explores practical and tangible ways we can take action for our environment and community. Bonnie also launched a YouTube channel exploring the same themes as her book in a more intimate and diaristic form. Bonnie is committed to using her platform to further her own education around climate and humanitarian issues and communicate her findings in an engaging way with her followers. She is an ambassador with Greenpeace, Kiss The Ground, and Choose Love.

Democracy Fossil Fuels Youth

Climate Change in the Courts

Fossil Fuels Justice Labor

Why Workers and Environmentalists Are Stronger Together

Back to top