Disposable plastic items are so common that it’s easy to not notice them. But disposable plastic is everywhere– the plastic straws delivered in our drinks; the plastic bags offered to us at stores; the plastic cups, bottles and utensils at nearly every social event; the plastic packaging of nearly everything in the supermarket. Once you see it for what it is—plastic pollution—it’s simple to just REFUSE. Here are some tips on how to avoid generating plastic waste.
- Bring a stainless steel water bottle rather than drinking water out of disposable plastic bottles. Purchase our cool water bottle in red, stainless steel or black at our online store or grabone at just about any store. Just make sure it is not aluminum.
- Don’t have your stainless steel bottle with you? Buy a glass-bottled drink. When you finish that beverage, reuse the bottle.
2. Bring Your Own Bag
Always bring your own bags whenever you shop, not just for the supermarket. By bringing your own bag, you alone can save between 400 and 600 plastic bags per year. There are lots of cool tote bag companies out there. Just a few of the bags we like:
- Chico bags – wonderful, small and easy to carry around in lots of colors
- Project GreenBag – organic cotton bags, made in San Francisco
- Citizenlove - designs by our co-founder Dianna Cohen
- Envirosax – very popular in Europe
Consider some easy alternatives to the ubiquitous plastic straws.
- No straw. Do you really need one?
- Carry your own stainless steel straw – you can purchase from our online store.
- Use an elegant glass straw in one of many sizes and designs
4. To Go Cups
Bring your own ceramic or stainless steel mug. Carry one in your car. Some coffee shops will even reward your thoughtfulness with a small discount on coffee or tea.
5. To Go Food Containers
Whether you prepare school lunch, order takeout or go out to eat, take along your own reusable containers. Some of the sites where you can purchase one:
6. To Go Utensils
Bring along your own utensil set, add a straw and you are all set! You can purchase beautiful sets at our online store.
Rather than buy plastic disposable lighters, consider investing in a refillable multi-use lighters. The oceans of the world and the albatross chicks who are fed these from out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean will thank you.
8. Milk or Juice
Buy your milk or juice in a glass returnable, reusable bottle… old fashioned, but tastes great and it’s better for you. Yes, it is a bit of a challenge, but well worth it.
9. Choose Paper to Wrap
Wax paper is an excellent substitute to the ubiquitous stretch plastic we have been told is essential for cooking and preserving foods. Choose wax paper to wrap sandwiches, place on top of foods warmed up in the microwave, or when storing food in the fridge. Yes, it does not stick to foods like plastic – that’s exactly what’s good about it!