So my last post about the current state of our Ocean Gyres definitely got the conversation going and served to highlight the fact that our system is not working. We are consuming at an unfathomable rate and as primarily using permanent materials to produce one-time use items. Say what? Why would we manufacture disposable items with a non perishable material such as plastic? It makes no sense at all. So, as promised, here is a list of suggestions and tips for how YOU can get plastic and litter savvy –
1. Use eco friendly shopping bags. It’s so so so frightening to think of just how many plastic bags are used and inappropriaetly disposed of every single day. Remember the creepy guy from American Beauty that captured the beautiful footage of the ‘floating bag’ … brother should have snatched that bag from the wind and reused or recycled it.
2. Be plastic bag savvy in general. Health food stores and SOME supermarkets are now stocking biodegradable plastic bags for bin liners, puppy poop and nappy bags. These are a great, earth friendly alternative to regular plastic bags. If you are using standard plastic bags – try and reduce your rate of powering through the pack. Use the same bin liner and empty your rubbish directly into your green rubbish bin. Or don’t use a line and give your household bins a hose out every week. Think outside the square and be uber plastic aware.
3. Opt for loose fruits and vegetables. Don’t go for the pre packaged options every time, try to stock up on loose fruit and vege every now and again to reduce your plastic consumption. Use the mushroom bags (the brown paper bags) if you feel like you need bags to separate your produce or get some of these great reusable produce bags by Onya. I use these little babies and they’re amazingly handy. Not only can you use them to collect all of your yummy produce – but when you get home you can use them to contain your fruits//veges while you wash them. Too easy!
4. Wear your ‘plastic glasses’ at the shops and choose paper based packaging alternatives. For example does your regular washing powder come in plastic tub AND boxed varieties? Choose ‘le box’. Toilet paper wrapped in a choice of plastic OR paper? Choose ‘le paper in le paper’. Same goes for juices and milks – opt for cartons instead of plastic bottles. Same product but a little more friendly to our planet.
5. Choose cloth based toys and materials for your kids (fur babies and real children alike!). There are some great earth friendly toys and products available for bubs and pets if you look around. Since I am not a real mama just yet, my toy purchases are solely for my big drooly rotty baby (and my fur nephew) and I always opt for eco friendly alternatives that use natural products that won’t hurt my pup when she happens to play with (subtext – eat) her new toys.
6. Use scented candles or burn essential oils rather than purchasing plastic encased air fresheners. Less chemicals, less toxins AND reusable//recyclable. That’s a sweet smelling win for errybody!
7. Be a coffee babe. If you drink macchiatos, cappucinos and espressos on the reg – be conscious of just how many cups and, more importantly, plastic lids, that you’re consuming every month. It gets pretty hectic! Opt for a reusable alternative, such as the Keep Cup, that looks brilliant, is kind to the earth and can also offer a lower priced coffee incentive! If your local coffee spot doesn’t offer cheaper rates for reusable coffee cup users then get pushy. Bring in some info about the improtance of encouraging reuasable alternatives and suggest that they charge custimers that make the switch 50c less per cup of coffee ordered. Get political and lobby for your latte. Check out this Great Forest article or more information and inspiration.
What are some of the ways that you ensure you’re not leaving a plastic Hansel & Gretal style trail? Share your tips below!
Blessings and a giant, yet belated, Earth Day cuddle x
PS. Want more info you knowledge hungry beautiful beings? Have a read on the Sustainable Coastlines and Method websites – these are the two organisations that I volunteered with for the clean up morning in Hawaii. Incredibly passionate and inspiring people and they have a LOT of info to share. Got a little longer to spare? Click here to watch ‘Plasticised’ – an incredible documentary about our plastic little planet.