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Plastics are one of the biggest environmental menaces today. Their inability to degrade with time makes them accumulate in the environment, causing major pollution. In most developed countries such as Canada, only 5 percent of all disposed plastics get recycled through plastic recycling plants. A whopping 70% of the plastic ends up in landfills in garbage collection facilities and dumpsites pending plastic waste removal. These are the plastics that end up being incinerated which causes further environmental pollution of the air. They even become life-threatening when they end up in the ocean and pollute the water and marine life. Plastic waste removal from the ocean and rivers, although possible, is difficult and expensive.
Over 80% of the plastic waste in our oceans originates on land, and three-quarters of that come from uncollected waste or litter. These sources account for everyday human activities which can be avoided by taking various measures.
Interested in learning how you can do your part to protect the environment? Here are 9 things that you can do to reduce your plastic waste output.
Stop buying plastic bottles
As seen above, water and beverage bottles are the most common pollutants of the ocean and land. This can be eased by ensuring that you do not buy plastic-bottled drinks, as disposable bottles are in most cases non-reusable. As an alternative, buying metallic bottles, which are reusable for a long time and do not pose health risks when you use them for drinking water as compared to plastics.
Use a reusable shopping bag
Plastic bags are also very common in landfills because they are of little value even when recycled as they contain very little plastic. The only way to avoid adding to this waste is to use reusable shopping bags made of biodegradable material. Buy a couple of reusable bags which you can carry to the shopping center to help reduce the consumption of plastic bags.
Quit using straws
Straws are given free of charge whenever one buys a drink or beverage. If you can take such a drink without needing to use the straws, you should try to avoid using them at all. They are a nightmare when disposed of in the environment. Using reusable metallic straws that are much safer or even bamboo straws would be environmentally friendly alternatives.
Invest in cloth-based nappies
Nappies are often plastic-based and take up to 500 years to decompose completely. Continual disposal of these in the environment causes a build-up of pollution. As an alternative, try cloth nappies that can either be disposed of or reused would help reduce your plastic waste. Cloth-based nappies have an additional benefit of being comfortable and breathable, keeping baby healthier and happier. Reusable cloth nappies can be washed and dried to be used again, something saving your money.
Carrying your lunch
A takeaway meal in a restaurant or fast food joint injects into the environment huge quantities of plastic waste. This is because most of these foods are packed in plastic containers and come with disposable utensils and spoons, all designed to be disposed of once you are done. Taking lunch each day in such a manner leads to a huge tonnage of plastic material annually. This can be resolved by carrying your lunch in a plastic or metal lunch box that is reusable.
Reuse your plastic containers
Some plastic waste is beyond our control but one thing you can do is try to reuse your plastic furniture and tools more. For instance, an old basin from the bathroom or kitchen can be used to plant some flowers instead of being thrown away. Also, empty plastic containers can be used to store water or even grains in your kitchen. This way, you will avoid throwing plastics in the environment.
Buy packaged foods in paper containers
Some common foods that we buy such as milk and yogurt come in plastic paper bags. To control your plastic output go for the milk and yogurt contained in disposable paper containers. That way you can continue to enjoy your favourite drinks in an environmentally safe way.
Grow your kitchen garden
Many kitchen ingredients such as fruits come from the grocery store wrapped in plastic. As an alternative, you can choose to grow your garden which would eliminate the use of plastic-wrapped ingredients. You could also choose to carry your own reusable non-plastic shopping bag whenever you visit such a store. Bulk shopping can also help to reduce waste if you bring your own containers.
Invest in a metallic bin
Most garbage bins today are made of plastics. It doesn’t make much sense to advocate for the reduction of personal plastic waste when the non-plastic waste that you produce is dumped in plastic bins. Besides, plastic bins are easily destroyed by the elements or accidents. They also become brittle when they sit in the sun for too long.
Alternatively, you should invest in a metallic dumpster rental company for a metallic bin which would last for a lifetime and which would inspire you to adopt a full non-plastic items lifestyle. At RedBins, we specialize in, among other things, dumpster rental. You can secure your waste collection and management systems with a guarantee.
For more information, please call us at 416-RED-BINS (733-2467) or contact us here.