The environment is suffering the consequences of our insatiable appetite for plastics. Let’s see how to make a change to reduce plastic waste.
The problem of plastic waste has reached a critical level. And single-use plastics are at the heart of the problem. These include disposable plastic straws, cutlery and cups, as well as single-use food containers and packaging materials.
What is really plastic?
Plastic is a material that has been widely used in the 20th, and early 21st centuries. Its versatility has allowed it to be used in almost every aspect of our lives – from packaging to clothing, toys and even medical equipment. The light weight and low cost of plastic have encouraged its widespread use. However, today we are facing an environmental crisis as a result of the excessive use of plastic.
How to reduce the plastic waste?
What we need to do is drastically reduce the amount of plastic that we produce and consume as much as possible. This will also help us avoid creating too much waste.
What can happen unless we reduce the plastic waste?
Besides the global issue of ocean pollution, landfills are also full with plastics. These non-biodegradable materials take hundreds of years to decompose and never fully biodegrades.
Over time, plastic degrades into small particles called microplastics, which pollute water and soil, making their way into the food chain through fish and other animals. Plastic even impacts human health because when these microplastics are ingested by humans, they can cause serious health problems.
Sadly, few people realize that we are sitting on a ticking time bomb. As we speak, our planet is accumulating millions of tons of plastic waste every year. Humans urgently require answers to the problem caused by plastic waste.
The good news is that there are many things you can do to help reduce the amount of plastic waste going into our oceans and waterways. You can start by recycling as much as possible, but you can also look for ways to re-use items instead of constantly throwing them away.
#1 Switch to reusable straws, utensils, containers, shopping bags
With all the problems in the world, you might wonder why this website is about plastic straws.
Eliminate single-use plastic straws and utensils, buy reusable ones instead. I think that in 2022, there will be a big change in how much plastic waste we produce. People will realize how bad it is for the environment and everyone will want to reduce as much as possible. I think more people will be looking for reusable containers and straws.
Reusable utensils and food containers need to be considered to reduce plastic waste. Using cleanable metal utensils can be costly at first but they are more environmentally friendly in the long run.
Plastic shopping bags which are single use needs to be reduced in consumption. Rather than going for single use plastics, choosing to reuse a bag or else switching to a cloth bag, tote is more sustainable.
#2 Greener containers for bread, eggs and everything possible
Where will we be in 2022? Will we have a plastic-free world? No, and that’s okay. The world would be a better place if we reduced our plastic waste by reducing unnecessary plastic items.
Each and every year, millions of tons of plastics end up collected in the ocean. Much of it is thrown away or lost by people living in cities. Much of it washes off the coasts and is carried by currents to the ocean. Most of this plastic never breaks down, but will remain in the oceans for at least a hundred years.
Eggs can be ordered in cardboard cartons and bread is better sold in paper bags so that it reduces single use plastics. We should be creative in solving this puzzle. Think of everything possible for greener and more sustainable packaging for your everyday needs.
#3 Glass water bottles and thermos at coffee shop
We are already seeing single-use plastic straws and stirrers, bags and Styrofoam containers fall out of favor. But these items are still in heavy use, and we can’t afford to stop using them entirely.
Using glass water bottles instead of plastic water bottles would be a good start to make a change. Instead of grabbing a coffee in a plastic container, plan ahead and bring your own thermos to the coffee shop to make an impact on the environment.
#4 Compost from waste and Recycle
There are more effective ways to help the environment that might actually have an impact.
We should also care about how much it costs governments to clean up plastic waste and all the other garbage humans produce. If everyone who read this made one small change, imagine how great that would be!
Making compost at home from waste products can be tried if you have the facilities and time. If you find it difficult to find greener products study more about how everyday waste is recycled and contribute to these recycling programs by providing your waste material. Put your trash in its place and be informed about how you can support to reduce the plastic waste burden.
#5 Bulk shopping to reduce plastic bags
Plastic bags can’t go in the recycling bin because they jam up the machines that sort the recyclables and plastic water bottles don’t have enough value for it to be worth the effort of sorting them out. So off they go to the landfill or into the recycling bin marked “unrecyclable” and eventually into our landfills. I’m not alone in this problem, of course; every year, millions of pounds of plastic end up in our oceans as well as our landfills.
Shopping in large quantities can help to reduce the amount of plastic bags and containers you need to purchase. This can drastically reduce waste you produce everyday. Going shopping with cloth bags that you reuse is the ideal solution to put an end to this daily evolving problem.
The world would be a better place if we reduced our waste by eliminating unnecessary items.
But it isn’t realistic to expect everyone on earth to do this today. And it doesn’t need to happen immediately; it will take decades to completely eliminate plastic waste, and you can still make small changes in this year that will make a difference.