We all know that plastic is bad for the environment & can be harmful to wildlife who ingest it (it kills turtles, penguins, dolphins, birds…). Australia alone produces 3 million tonnes of plastic a year of which <9% is recycled. Up to 130,000 tonnes will end up in the ocean each year. Unfortunately, this plastic never breaks down and only becomes smaller and smaller pieces over time.
Many of us are using plastic in our everyday lives without even thinking about it. In fact, a lot of the plastic used is used on the go or when travelling. The use of these single-use items are unnecessary and can be avoided with a little preparation beforehand.
Below are 5 simple ways to reduce your plastic usage:
1-Always bring a water bottle with you
-This way you wouldn’t need to buy bottled water on the go
-In fact, 50 billion single-use plastic water bottles are bought each year
2-Refuse plastic straws
-Sometimes drink cups have another opening to drink from so a straw is unnecessary (e.g. T-mix in Melbourne)
-If you prefer to use straws you can bring a reusable bamboo or stainless steel straw
3-Bring your own fabric shopping bags
-Fold 1 up and put it in your bag just in case you need to buy something outside your weekly shop
-Use reusable produce bags for fruits and vegetables rather than the plastic bags provided
-Or you can put large pieces of fruit or vegetables straight in the trolley without a bag
4-Buy less heavily packaged products
-Packaged food is usually processed food with added sugar and salt=Unhealthy
-Instead buy more minimally packaged or unpackaged whole foods such as whole grains, nuts, legumes, fruits & vegetables=Healthier
-Bring your own containers to bulk food stores
-When you need to buy products in containers, choose glass containers over plastic ones. This also applies to skincare products. These containers can be reused to store things once the product is used up
5-Use soy wax wraps rather than glad wrap
-Can be used to cover food bowls & wrap up sandwiches and snacks
Take it slowly, maybe start with 1 or 2 things you are not already doing, as every lifestyle change you make in reducing plastic usage will make a difference.
Thank you for reading.