Within the last few years plastic pollution has turned into a massive environmental problem. Plastic products are now embedded into nearly every aspect of our lives. With 8 million tonnes of plastic entering the oceans every year, we really need to take drastic positive action. Here are 6 tips from the La Bella Verde team to help reduce plastic usage in your everyday life.
1. Bring your own shopping bag
A plastic shopping bag has an average lifespan of just 15 minutes and it can take up to 1000 years to break down. Rethink your shopping habits and plan ahead. Refuse widely available ‘single-use’ plastic bags and purchase a ‘bag for life’ or a cotton tote bag to use instead of the plastic option. Keep your alternative bag in the car or near your front door of the house to make sure you never forget it. Making this small change alone can save approximately 500 ‘single-use’ bags per year which really makes a big difference!
2. Carry a reusable water bottle
In the UK 38.5 million single-use plastic bottles are sold every day, the stats for Europe are even more staggering. Carrying a bottle of water with you ensures you are well hydrated throughout your daily activity, but if you use a plastic option we suggest you search the alternatives. Get yourself a stainless steel water bottle that can last you a lifetime and allow you to refill your water before you leave home every morning and also refill at work, in the local cafe or using water fountains and filling stations where possible. Resulting in 365 less plastic bottles used every year and keeping you active in the fight against plastic. We love these bottles by S’well that keep your bottles cool in the Ibiza sun!
3. Get your own coffee cup
Speaking of refillable, bringing your own personal cup for take-away coffee can also reduce your immediate plastic footprint. Some of the forward thinking cafes and coffee shops will also provide a discount as a reward for this action.
4. Say no to disposable straws and cutlery
Plastic straws … do you really need one? Probably not! Whenever you order a drink remember to ask your server to leave out the straw as they automatically assume its inclusion. If you must use a straw, why not purchase a stainless steel one and replace the single-use straws at home with reusable bamboo straws. Remember to refuse disposable cutlery when ordering take-aways, you can wait till you get home to eat or keep some traditional cutlery in the car wrapped or even better opt in for some chopsticks. Think more eco and enjoy the meal and feel even more! We love these Bamboo straws Ibiza in the image!
5. Avoid convenience food
This might be challenging for some but avoiding convenience food really helps to reduce our global plastic footprint. Ready-to-eat meals, sandwiches, salads, frozen foods and convenience snacks are in most cases always wrapped in plastic. The best way to give up or go without plastic that comes with convenience foods is by cooking at home, not only will you be healthier but also actively making your stand and saving Euros too. If that’s not entirely possible, why not try choosing brands that use non-plastic packaging, vegeware, bamboo plates and any of the new wave of eco friendly serviceware.
No you’ve learnt some quick tips on how to reduce plastic footprint, turn it into practice. Make sure you promote this positive step with your friends and colleagues and share your ideas for cutting back on plastics ensuring we collectively aim to make our planet plastic-free (where possible)! Overwhelming? Try picking just one thing at a time and once can fluidly integrate into your lifestyle then simply move onto the next one.
We are all directly responsible for saving our planet with sustainable solutions and making an impact on historical practices that no longer service this goal. Become an eco-warrior and prominent ambassador for nature. We all need to do our part to ensure this beautiful world remains a platform for a positive future through our own participation and nurturing it’s preservation.