Plastic is everywhere and it’s taking over our landfills. In order to keep plastic out of the trash, we have to reduce our dependence on it. It’s actually simple. There are things you can do every day to limit your need for plastic.
Say no to plastic bags
This is one of the easiest things you can do to reduce plastic waste. When you go shopping, whether it’s to a retail store or grocery store, bring your own cloth bags. Every minute about one million plastic bags are used and if everyone brought their own bags to the grocery store, we’d make some headway. Additionally, don’t use the plastic produce bags on hand at the grocery store. Instead, buy cotton or cloth ones that you can reuse.
Skip the straws
Plastic straws are an incredibly wasteful item. When you go to a restaurant, tell your server that you’ll skip the straw. For those who need to sip with straws for their convenience, get yourself a reusable stainless steel or glass drinking straw. Keep it with you, so when you’re out to eat, you’ll have your sipping aid handy.
Go for glass
When shopping for prepared foods like peanut butter, juices and sauces, opt for the glass option. Although you may pay a few cents more for spaghetti sauce that comes in a glass bottle, you get to reuse the glass and you’re saving the environment. It’s a win-win. Another way to give up plastic and go for glass is to stop drinking bottled water. Bottled water produces up to 1.5 million tonnes (1,360,777,110 kilograms) of waste yearly. As a substitute, get yourself a glass bottle you can fill with water.
The diaper dilemma
About 7.6 billion pounds of disposable diapers are discarded in the U.S. alone each year. In lieu of using disposable plastic diapers, try their reusable cloth counterparts instead. An added bonus of cloth diapers is that they end up being cheaper than plastic ones. Your baby won’t know the difference and it’s always good to start them going green when they’re young!
BYOC (bring your own container)
This option to reduce plastic waste is a little tricky because not all restaurants will go for this. When you’re picking up takeout, ask if you can bring your own reusable containers. Instead of using the restaurant’s plastic take-away bowls and boxes, drop off your own while you place the order. If you’re placing your order over the phone, ask them if you can still bring your own container. Who knows, maybe in a couple of years BYOC will become the norm in restaurants?
If we work together to reduce plastic waste, we’ll feel good about ourselves and the planet will be very appreciative!