Ways to Reduce Plastic Use in Simple Ways
As we covered in our previous article, we must find ways to reduce plastic use in order to address plastic pollution. Plastic is one of the world’s most pressing environmental problems. There is a lot of noise around the subject. We’re always hearing just how important it is to “reduce, reuse, recycle”. However, it can be difficult to understand just how extensive this problem really is.
Why Reduce Plastic Use?
To help you begin to quantify plastic pollution, here are some numbers:
- 8 million new plastic pollutants arrive in the ocean every day
- 2 million plastic bags used every 60 seconds across the world
- 1.1 million animals killed by plastic pollution every year
- 540 million pounds of plastic pollution currently in our oceans
Consider the 540 million pounds of plastic pollution in animal terms (which is a much more fun way to measure numbers anyway).
Reduce Plastic Use to Protect the Planet
Simply put, there is just an absolutely insane amount of unnatural, harmful chemical substances in the environment. Plastic is polluting our ocean, infiltrating the food chain, and harming countless species.
While this is obviously an extremely urgent problem, there are plenty of ways you can contribute to its solution. To get you started, here are five more simple ways to help reduce your plastic use!
1 | Whole Fruity
Go for Fruit, Not Juice: Fruit juice often comes in plastic packaging, which can easily be avoided by buying real fruit. Oranges, apples, etc., are almost always package-free (and often healthier too). You can get the same taste and nutrients as you would from the juice, or you can invest in a juicer if you still crave that refreshing beverage.
2 | Better Bottle
Carry a Reusable Water Bottle: You’d be surprised at just how often you use a plastic cup or plastic bottle to drink water on the go. Reusable water bottles will save you money. They’ll also completely eliminate your contribution to one of the most common uses of plastic.
3 | Stun Gum
Quit Chewing Gum: This one might confuse you at first. You might be asking, “What does gum have to do with plastic?” Well, technically, gum is made of a kind of plastic, which might be enough to put you off it in the first place. Ditching gum will also help lower your sugar intake and protect your teeth! That’s a win win!
4 | Cleaner Wash
Stop Washing Your Face with Microplastics: Yes, strangely enough, tiny plastics are often added to face wash, meant to act as an exfoliant. While we all love to exfoliate, these microplastics go directly down the drain and almost immediately contribute to plastic pollution. Instead, look for all-natural, plastic-free exfoliants!
5 | No-brainer Container
Ditch the Sandwich Bag: Rather than storing your food in a plastic sandwich bag, utilize your reusable containers. Often, people continue to buy packs of plastic sandwich bags. A better option is to invest in a larger collection of storage containers. This will save you money in the long run and also help protect our planet!
Keep on Innovating Ways to Reduce Plastic Use
The truth is, the average human uses plastic so often, it can be hard to even notice! If you keep your eyes peeled, you’ll start to notice plenty of other simple ways to reduce your plastic use. When it comes to living a more environmentally friendly life, it’s just like getting better at anything. It’s all about practice! So let’s make this tiny lifestyle change together.
While you’re here, for a little pick me up, why not take a look at 5 Inspirational Sustainability Stories?