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What’s more fun than having your cake and eating it to? A 2Fer is getting a big bang for you buck and an additional benefit on the side. You may not know it but I’m doing everything I can to save the planet. I think a lot of people would like to do more if it were more convenient. You may not want to go the extent I have such as a solar powered home and electric vehicle, but there are some smaller things that can help.
As you know, the amount of plastic that winds up in landfills and the ocean is out of control. Just check out The Great Pacific Garbage Patch for a real eye opener. How much is out there? A ridiculous amount.
At the time of sampling, there were more than 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic in the patch that weigh an estimated 80,000 tonnes. These figures are much higher than previous calculations.
The plastic heap in the ocean does more than just kill marine life, all of that plastic breaks down into micro particles and we wind up eating it. Fish can’t tell that the smaller pieces aren’t food and when they eat it, it gets stuck in their bodies.
Recycling helps reduce problems like this, but unfortunately some things that are technically recyclable just don’t or can’t get recycled easily. So this is where I focus a lot of time to find alternatives that are cheap, available, and easy to use.
Ways You Can Help
So as a practical example, I’ve made lunches for several years without any single use plastic. This include Ziplock bags, plastic film, and the like. I did it simply by placing fruit and other items in jam jars or high quality glass with plastic lids ( re-used literally hundreds of times).
What about sandwiches? Yeah, I don’t need plastic here either. I’ve been buying these simple folded waxed paper sheets like this one and wrapping my sandwiches without plastic. They are cheap and really handy as each sheet comes out one at a time without having to cut them to length. To secure them closed, I use a tiny piece of blue painters tape. Works like a charm and they never come open accidentally.
Well I have you covered here too. We bought a couple of high quality insulated stainless containers. These work great and keep the food hot (or cold) for hours. They are durable because they are made out of metal and last for years. As you know, I buy quality upfront and treat things like this as an investment.
Wow, disposable straws are a huge problem. These litter bugs are not easily recyclable and go straight to the dump or the ocean. What a mess. You can stop this very easily by buying re-usable and dishwasher safe metal straws. They clean up easily and last for years. I realize why people love straws. Some say that beverages taste better in straws.
To Go Containers
Plastic to go containers can be replaced with compostable plant based trays. I found a pack of 100 of these at Costco for $15.79 which works out to $0.16 each.
Plastic Water Bottles
I won’t buy them unless I’m desperate and have no other option. Instead, I filter the water at home and pack my water everywhere in glass or inert stainless steel. I avoid aluminum and prefer the stainless insulated containers because they are light and very durable. Talk about a cost difference, this simple act of filtering at home for water that costs about 1 penny per gallon is outstanding. Just think about it, even in cases a pint is like $.40 each and that’s ridiculous. Plan ahead and kill two birds with one stone. Even when you factor in the cost of the filter, it’s far cheaper this way.
The only way to really save the environment is for enough people to change their daily habits including what they buy and how they use it. You may think that little things like this don’t matter but they actually do. I hope that you can take a proactive approach to reducing single use plastic and join me in the quest for a clean planet.
If you have any suggestions that you would like to share, then leave a comment below.