The Charity for Environmental Illness

Plastic Free July

The plastic bottles, bags and takeaway containers that we use just for a few minutes use a material that is designed to last forever. 

These plastics:

  • break up, not break down – becoming permanent pollution
  • are mostly downcycled (made into low grade product for just one more use) or sent to landfill
  • ‘escape’ from bins, trucks, events etc. to become ‘accidental litter’
  • end up in waterways and the ocean – where scientists predict there will be more tonnes of plastic than tonnes of fish by 2050
  • transfer to the food chain – carrying pollutants with them
  • increase our eco-footprint – plastic manufacturing consumes 6% of the world’s fossil fuels

Choosing to be part of the solution, you can act by:

  • Avoiding products in plastic packaging (choose alternatives)
  • Reducing where possible (opt for refills, remember your reusable shopping bags)
  • Refusing plastics that escape as litter (e.g. straws, takeaway cups, utensils, balloons)
  • Recycling what cannot be avoided

Tips for making a change: Use What You Have

  • Save your glass jars and bottles for purchasing bulk food and for storing leftovers.
  • Store leftovers in a bowl with plate over the top instead of using plastic wrap.
  • If you have plastic containers in the cupboard - use them until they wear out.
  • Store vegetables in reused plastic bags, wrapped in damp tea towels or glass containers.
  • Wrap sandwiches in fabric or paper.
  • Herbs keep well in a slightly damp tea towel in a glass container.
  • Wrap cheese in an old linen tea towel.
  • Freeze leftovers in heat stable glass containers eg Pyrex.
  • Use a clean shower cap to cover a bowl.
  • Line rubbish bin with several layers of newspaper.

Freezing Meat/Seafood

  • Wrap in baking paper

Choose Better

  • Check charity/op shops, ask family and friends and look on Buy Nothing groups before buying anything new.
  • Choose glass or stainless steel food storage containers.
  • Buy reusable products from companies who care about the planet rather than big box stores.
  • Try to find local stores in your neighbourhood to support before buying online.

For more ideas and to join the choose to refuse campaign click here.

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