THE PLASTIC BAG CHALLENGE
It is no secret that we are slowly killing our planet with plastic! Most plastic these days are synthetic and therefor does not biodegrade, which means that it piles up as waste all around in our beautiful nature – leading to destruction of fragile ecosystems.
SAY NO TO SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS
One massive environmental issue these days is the amount of the plastic carrier bags that we use on a daily basis. A majority of them ends up in our oceans. Many of which wash up on shore polluting and destroying the environment. But worst of all, the plastic is often eaten by marine animals that then lead to fatal consequences. I know I sound quite dramatic now, but this is a very serious issue that we should all try and address somehow. Why isn’t there a ban on offering plastic bags in shops when it is so easy to offer paper bags instead? Well, I know there is a ban on lightweight plastic bags in several local territories around the world – but they are still very much accessible here in London and most places I have visited lately.
So what can we do as individuals to help this situation? There are of course many ways of reducing our use of plastic, and some are more extreme than others. But lets have a look at some very doable options that doesn’t mean you have to make big changes to your life style.
MY NEW YEARS RESOLUTION
On New Years Eve I was having a little thing about what my New Year resolutions should be. Of course, like most of us, I too have the intensions of taking better care of my self; exercise more, eat healthier, drink more water and less alcohol and so on. You know, the standard January stuff. But as a little challenge to my self I also decided to see if I’m able to go a whole year without using any new plastic bags. So ever since the 1st of January I have been brining old reusable plastic bags with me when I go food shopping, and I always tend to keep a folded up cotton bag inside all of my handbags so that I always have something to carry stuff in if I buy anything whilst I’m out. And so far I find that this is very doable and actually no problem at all. The main issue is the fact that I sometimes forget to bring reusable bags with me, which means I have ended up at several occasions carrying a few too many items back with me from the shop with no bag. Balancing them all on top of each other, and probably looking like an absolute idiot trying to get it all back home with me. Luckily I do live like 300 meters from my local grocery store, so this is not a big problem.
In The UK they actually implemented a new rule in October 2015 saying that all large shops need to charge 5p for all single-use plastic bags. This is something they have done in hope of encouraging people to use reusable bags instead. However, 5p is next to nothing so I recon most people won't mind at all paying this tiny fee for a bag. However, I bet people keep thinking that I am the stingiest person ever not wanting to spend 5p on a bag when they see me struggling home with all of my groceries balancing in my arms :P But I obviously don’t do this challenge for the sake of saving money – I do it for the environment. I know it is a very small contribution to the reduction of plastic use – but it is better than doing nothing at least. We can actually make a big difference if we all stop using them. So I encourage anyone who reads this to join me in a plastic bag – free 2018!
OTHER LITTLE THINGS YOU CAN DO TO REDUCE YOUR USE OF PLASTIC ARE:
Don’t use straws. When in bars and restaurants, ask specifically not to get a straw in your drink.
Use reusable water bottles instead of single-use plastic ones.
Buy food with less or no plastic packaging when possible. In most supermarkets you can buy fruit and vegetable loose rather than pre-packaged.
Order your milk from the milkman (sounds old fashion I know – but it is still a thing here in The UK apparently). The milkman reuses your old glass bottles, which you leave out for him/her when you are done with them.
Choose product alternatives that come in glass or cardboard packaging rather than in plastic.
And for the plastic that you do use, make sure to recycle as much as possible of it! :)
IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM ZOE DESCHANEL
You might have seen this video already as it has been shared around on facebook for a while now. If you haven't seen it though, then please take a look :)