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When we read about the scale of plastic waste clogging our garbage dumps, and contaminating our oceans, it’s tempting to feel overwhelmed, and concern whether anything we can personally do would realistically make a distinction to this massive concern.
However, the truth is that even little modifications of habit, built up over time, amount to a big distinction. Then when you consider that there are lots of like-minded individuals making the exact same favorable changes as you, to decrease the plastic waste they are developing, you can see that together we can make an enormous distinction for the much better.
It’s a frightening reality that every single piece of plastic ever made still exists someplace on this planet. With plastic there actually is no ‘away’.
Whilst we deal with plastic as a non reusable product, it’s actually indestructible, at least during our life times and for the next couple of generations to follow us.
Whether plastic waste winds up in land fill, the countryside or the sea, it has destructive impacts on wildlife and marine life, who either get knotted, or mistake it for food and choke or starve.
It is approximated that plastic eliminates over 100,000 marine animals and 1 million marine birds a year.
The issue is then compounded when the plastic rubbish breaks down into small toxic particles that pollute our water system and enter our food cycle.
Plastic is all over in modern-day life, so it is very hard to avoid entirely. Most single-use plastic items are completely unnecessary and have actually only been introduced into our way of lives fairly just recently in the name of convenience.
We believe it’s due time we reassess our obsession with convenience, and prioritise sustainable options that appreciate our planet.
There are some really simple modifications of habit you can embrace today to stem the flow of the plastic waste that your way of life creates.
Here are our top 9 suggestions for coping with less plastic …
1. Bring your own shopping bag
Plastic bags are typically utilized for a matter of minutes before being discarded, and after that take hundreds of years to break down. Many of us own multiple-use bags, but the difficulty is remembering to have them with us when we require them. One easy method to bear in mind is to always keep a recyclable bag (or bags) by your front door, in your bag, laptop bag, coat pocket, glove compartment … any place works for you. If you do forget, rather of accepting a plastic bag on car pilot, see if you can manage without. Typically we can merely bring the products loose. Once you have actually successfully adopted the routine to constantly bring your own reusable bag, consider going one action further and persuading your regional town to go plastic bag-free! We are presently working with a group of similar people to encourage our regional town to offer up plastic bags, see this post for some recommendations on how to start.
2. Bring a reusable water bottle
Lots of research study has actually highlighted that as well as being less eco-friendly, bottled water is in fact less healthy than tap water, despite the mineral water companies’ best marketing efforts to convince us otherwise. The bottled water industry is far less managed than faucet water in the UK, so when we buy mineral water we have much less peace of mind about the quality of the water we are drinking. Meanwhile the contaminants from the plastic water bottles have been discovered to seep into the water, especially when the bottle is used more than as soon as, or has actually been left in the light or heat for anytime, which might have occurred throughout transit. The healthier, and more planet-friendly, option is to carry your own multiple-use water bottle that you fill up with tap water at house, work, the gym, and even by popping into a regional café. A lot of people are really sensible and will concur to re-fill if you explain your eco-reasons. You could even use to pay the price of a bottle of water if it makes you feel more comfortable. Our favourite reusable water bottles are made from stainless steel or glass (with protective silicone sleeve) as they are much easier to clean, and we prefer not to store our food and beverage in plastic. Even a plastic reusable water bottle will help resolve the waste problems caused by the millions of single-use plastic water bottles discarded every day worldwide– of which only a fraction are recycled, and we simply do not have the facilities to efficiently get rid of the rest.
3. Bring your own cup
Today it’s common to invest our days racing from one commitment to the next without making time for a coffee break, which describes why many of us like to grab a take-out tea or coffee to take pleasure in on-the-go. This is relatively new surge in take-away hot drinks is having ravaging consequences on our environment. An estimated 2.5 billion coffee cups are gotten rid of in the UK alone every year, which equates to practically 5,000 a minute! Over 99% of takeaway coffee cups do not get recycled (even the paper cups are lined with plastic that makes them harder to recycle), so the disposable cups and their lids either end up in garbage dump, or become plastic contamination in our waterways and oceans. The basic way to ensure you aren’t adding to the issue is to find a reusable cup or insulated bottle that you like, and be sure to bring it with you all the time. You may even save loan as there are a growing variety of eco-minded cafe using a discount to consumers who bring their multiple-use cups. Choosing a reusable coffee cup might likewise motivate you to make your own hot drink at home before triggering, and save you the expense of at least one take-out drink a day.
4. Pack your lunch in reusable containers
There are lots of factors to take your own lunch to work, school, the park, the beach, or on any outdoor adventure. You will certainly conserve cash by making your own lunch, and you also are most likely to make more healthy choices preparing your lunch ahead of time, instead of seeking to purchase something when you are already truly starving! However for us, the most engaging factor is that buying take-out includes great deals of single-use plastic product packaging that we can avoid if we bring our own lunch. Which brings us to the next challenge– disposable plastic sandwich bags and stick movie do not make our homemade lunch more eco-friendly than a take-out. For a waste-free lunch we recommend any of the following: stainless steel bento boxes and treat pots, stainless steel thermos food pots, multiple-use sandwich bags and beeswax food wrap. Our preference is to avoid multiple-use plastic food containers due to the threat of contaminants leaching into our food, plus we think food tastes much better when it isn’t served in plastic.
5. State no to disposable straws & & cutlery Disposable plastic flatware and straws are among the worst plastic pollution offenders. Similar to plastic bags and bottles, single-use utensils and straws are typically used simply once, for a number of minutes, prior to they are thrown away, and after that they either litter our towns and countryside, accumulate in landfill, or enter our waterways and oceans. However, it’s in fact really easy to get in the practice of carrying your own cutlery with you, and leave a set in the automobile. There are lots of alternatives, and you don’t necessarily require to invest any money. You could merely grab a stainless steel knife, fork and spoon (or chopsticks!) from your home flatware drawer and keep them rolled in a napkin with a rubber band around it. Additionally you might buy bamboo cutlery in a travel pouch, a spork, or stainless steel flatware in a travel case– whatever works for you so you have it when you need it. As for straws, we’ve seen graphic videos of a sea turtle having a straw painfully removed from it’s nose, and feel heartbroken that numerous thousands (or millions?) of animals are suffering from the consequences of our plastic contamination, which in all truthfully we could live without. Either avoid the straw (and you have to fast to state ‘no straw please’, as lots of establishments serve drinks with straws as a matter of course) or if you really need to have one, select a reusable stainlesssteel
straw. 6– Slow down and dine in
Our fixation with eating and drinking on-the-go is a fairly recent advancement. Modern-day innovation has actually been positive in so lots of methods, one of the disadvantages is that we anticipate whatever instantaneously. We try to cram a lot into our days that we forget the simple pleasures, such as decreasing to correctly taste and appreciate our food, or taking a lunch hour (or half hour) to catch up personally with a buddy or associate. Why not try structuring your day so you make time to stop when it is time to consume or consume, and enjoy it by dining in your preferred café, pub or dining establishment. You will be stunned how much more refreshed you will feel from taking a short break out of your day. If you can’t manage the time, or included expense, of dining in, you could grab one of the recyclable glass, stainless-steel (or plastic) containers sitting in your cabinets and see if your regional café or restaurant will fill it for you rather than utilizing their single-use take-out containers. You might always call ahead to have a chat about desiring to utilize your own containers if it makes you feel more comfortable. If you work in an office it’s handy to keep a clean, empty food container at your desk for days when you do not handle to bring your own lunch, and can’t take time out to dine in.
7. Avoid the plastic fruit and vegetables bags
When we are purchasing fresh fruit and veg, the majority of people remain in the routine of either choosing the ready-packaged choices (in plastic!), or tearing off among the fiddly light-weight plastic produce bags that the shop offers to carry our fruit and vegetables in our basket or trolley to the checkout. Nevertheless, when you stop to think of it, do you actually need a plastic produce bag? It’s actually not that a lot more effort to put your fruit and veg loose in your trolley or basket, discharge it loose onto the conveyor belt, and after that pack it in your reusable shopping bags together with the rest of your shopping. If you are fretted about hygiene, it’s worth bearing in mind that we do not really understand what has actually occurred to our fruit and veg prior to it is shown for us to pick (better not to believe about this!) which is why we need to make sure we appropriately clean or peel it anyhow before we consume it. If you always purchase lots of fruit and vegetables, and believe it would be really cumbersome to have them loose in your shopping trolley, you could consider buying some light-weight reusable mesh produce bags to take when you do your grocery shopping. Or check out a local house shipment veg box scheme, as they tend to utilize less plastic product packaging than the grocery stores.
8. Store leftovers in glass jars
As we have actually currently discussed, we truly choose not to use plastic containers to save our food due to the danger of toxic substances seeping into it, specifically when the food is either hot, or frozen. Glass is a really safe food storage option, and we have actually just recently discovered that instead of sending our glass containers to be recycled, we can quickly re-purpose them for all sorts of usages consisting of: saving leftovers in the fridge, freezing prepared or uncooked food, keeping any dry items in our cabinets, as take-out containers, and for bringing our lunch to work, or on our travels. You can re-purpose any size or shape of container, but you will quickly discover which ones are most beneficial for you, and may even find yourself purchasing a particular brand name of jam or condiment based upon how helpful the jar it can be found in is, rather than due to the fact that of its contents! You may also value having a few wide-mouthed mason jars to hand, as they are a fantastic shape for nearly any use. Our favourite mason jar is the Le Parfait Familia Wiss Terrine due to it’s large mouth and easy to clean screw leading lid.
9. Share these suggestions with your good friends
We do not want to preach to others about their way of life choices, but it works to show our family and friends the factors behind why we are making our way of life options: to reduce our contribution to the problem of plastic contamination. Discussing it assists raise awareness of the problems, and might motivate others to pick some waste-reducing practices too. The most essential thing is to have enjoyable in your efforts to minimize your reliance on single-use plastic. It’s clearly an extremely major issue, and humanity is going to need to do a lot of work to tackle it over the next couple of decades, but it’s not handy to lose time feeling downhearted. We just get one life, so we must concentrate on maximizing it, and finding ways to make a positive effect on our world. Be ingenious, be innovative, and welcome your life with less plastic!
#RefuseSingleUse #ChooseReusables #UseLessPlastic
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