Reduce, reuse, recycle…. It’s encouraging to see recycling becoming routine. Many people have recycling bins in their homes; recycling containers are in downtowns and parks, airports and shopping malls. (Shockingly though, there are many areas of the country that do not recycle.) But – we also need to reuse and reduce the amount of plastic we use. Below are some ideas on how:
- Plastic Water Bottles – Only 1 in 5 water bottles are recycled. They are not biodegradable and end up as litter or in the landfill leaching chemicals, especially if the plastic is cracked or damaged. 40% of bottled water is tap water and 22% of tested bottled water contained chemical contaminants. There are times when it’s convenient to carry a plastic water bottle, but most of the time it’s just as easy to use a reusable one or drink from a glass. Install a water filter or buy a Brita water filter pitcher for delicious water if you are concerned about tap water, though we have some of the safest water in the world.
- Plastic refrigerator containers – It’s good to reuse a sturdy plastic ice cream or take out container (never microwave in them however), but when you buy refrigerator containers, go with glass. Pyrex and other brands make heavy, tempered glass containers that are stackable, freezable, microwaveable and dishwasher safe. And they won’t leach toxic chemicals into your food! The Container Store carries vintage glass refrigerator dishes and I found the real, colored Pyrex containers from the 1950’s at a flea market. Fun! My rule of thumb: food and plastic don’t go together.
- Liquid soap dispensers – Liquid soap dispensers seem to have replaced bar soap. There are many different brands, scents and lovely plastic bottles. Sometimes they are convenient, but really, what is wrong with a bar of soap placed in a soap container by your sink? A liquid soap dispenser at the kitchen sink and in each bathroom, replaced every few months, adds up to a lot of unnecessary plastic! If you must use them, please refill the same containers with liquid soap from a larger container.
- Reusable shopping bags have really count on and are definitely helping to reduce the millions of plastic bags we acquire! If you haven’t got on board yet, now is the time!
With a little awareness, you can cut back on your plastic usage. Email me your ideas!
Some Information compiled from www.onlineeducation.net/bottled_water