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Thread: Reducing the plastic you use

  1. #1

    Reducing the plastic you use

    Hey everyone!

    We all know how terrible plastic is for our environment, especially the oceans. That's why in 2018 I want to reduce the amount of plastic I use. I'd like to know of any plastic reducing techniques or products you have found worked for you and ways that you can think of to help reduce the impact of plastic on our oceans. Thanks!
    ~Mermaid Salacia~
    Sea Witch of South Australia
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  2. #2
    Super easy and simple one I learned down in Florida! Don't use straws in restaurants, or carry your own reusable one. Of course, if the drink comes with a straw already in it, there's not much you can do. But if the server leaves the straws on the table still in the wrapper, don't use it so they can be "recycled" for another customer. You can also ask to not have straws in your drink, but I always tend to forget to do that

  3. #3
    Member Pod of Oceania Mermaid Salty's Avatar
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    The straw tip is spot on.
    You can also go 'topless' when getting a takeaway coffee, or bring your own reuseable cup.
    Lots of states here in Aus have started to ban single use plastic bags so get yourself some canvas or hessian bags for shopping - keep one in your bag, and some in your car so you always have them at hand.
    I never put produce into the plastic 'freezer' style bags they provide at supermarkets either - I don't see the point in it!?
    And I avoid products that I feel are unnecesarily or 'over' packaged, (for example, a certain brand of coffee pods I bought once or twice that come in a sealed container, but then are all individually wrapped as well - what's with that? I stopped buying them)

  4. #4
    Straws are super easy to quit. The only time I find I need one is when I drink bubble tea so I'm looking at getting a metal straw for that (a cup that works for it would be even better). I also have a take away coffee cup. I got mind from Typo because they have so much mermaid and witchy things. I like that a lot of places will give you discount for bringing your own cup! Boost juice do a discount too with smoothies, so a reusable smoothie cup could be a good investment.

    I'm in SA and we haven't had plastic bags in supermarkets for several years. People are only just starting to get used to bringing a bag now but it's starting to be more accepted.

    Wasteful packaging is the bane of my existence. One of the places I have worked at sent all the stock (clothing) wrapped in individual bags and then bagged the same items together and then bagged the whole order before putting it in the box. We threw away so much plastic every day that it hurt my soul. I would like to see companies take more of stance against plastic waste but that drive for change starts with passionate individuals, like us.
    ~Mermaid Salacia~
    Sea Witch of South Australia
    https://www.facebook.com/themermaidsalacia/
    mermaidsalacia.weebly.com/

  5. #5
    Also get reusable water bottles. I've used the same 48 oz one for about a year and a half now, and it's drastically cut down on how many plastic bottles I've gotten. Plus it saves money! I have one of these ones from Nalgene. If you keep your eyes out, they're on sale a lot of the time. I picked mine up from REI for about $7. Avoid plastic bags, 95% of the time paper bags work just as well for things like sandwiches, chips, and popcorn. If you need something a bit more durable use aluminum foil, since that's recyclable.
    Proud Merman, Eaglescout, DIYer, and lover of nature

  6. #6
    If I get food out somewhere I always try to eat in rather than getting takeaway containers and if I get a take away container I was and reuse until they fall apart.

    Great suggestion on the paper bags Takahao! I always forget those are a thing you can buy

  7. #7
    Bulk shopping is a great way to reduce your plastic use too! Lots of places will let you use your own reusable produce bags or jars. Some places will let you get your takeaway food in your own reusable containers as well

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    No straws. It's tough to get in the habit of saying it at resteraunts. I also don't buy any food prepackaged in plastic. No plastic bags, I always bring my backpack if I'm going shopping. Water bottle. I don't drink Soda, bottled water or any other single use containers. If like to keep a glass with a top and metal straw if I'm going to a smoothie or coffee shop.

    The most important thing is mentality. I ask my self " is X so important that the plastic is worth being in the ocean for thousands of years?" The answer is almost always no.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Pod of Texas Mermaid Delphinidae's Avatar
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    I need to start doing the straw thing.

    I'm starting to buy bamboo toothbrushes instead of plastic. And I'm keeping a reusable grocery bag in my car. I've been using the reusable bag for a while but sometimes I'll forget to bring one or I'll decide I gotta run to the grocery store while I'm out and I don't have one with me. Of course, when I do get plastic bags I make sure to reuse them to scoop up cat litter.

  10. #10
    I refill jugs of water at the store instead of buying new ones. it's also cheaper.
    Buying fresh produce really helps. I reuse those tiny thin bags for my tomatoes and smaller things.
    I prep all my meals and snacks so I don't feel like I need to buy any prepackaged snacks or eat out.
    i really enjoy this channel. There are some nice ideas on here
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgj...jR_8zIFDsIPpww
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    Senior Member Pod of Cali Mermaid Holly's Avatar
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    My goal for the month of February is to not use ANY plastic straws or cutlery, and I've convinced my family to do likewise.

    I've also head of beeswax paper instead of plastic wrap on food, though I have yet to try this...

    (Warning, period stuff.) Another thing is using a menstral cup instead of wasting plastic packaging on tampons and pads every month.

    How do you guys dispose of pet waste without using plastic bags? I always feel bad every time I use a plastic bag while cleaning up my bunny's litter box.

    Sent from my [device_name] using MerNetwork mobile app
    "Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me."

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  12. #12
    Member Pod of Oceania Mermaid Salty's Avatar
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    Beeswax wraps are the bomb! Lots of schools here are starting to try and elimiate single-use plastics from kids lunch boxes and beeswax wraps are the bomb for that. I don't have kids yet but I use these for sandwiches and fruit and cake or whatever! They clean up really easy. I haven't had any issues at all with them and they are very affordable. They're also easy to make yourself if you have an Apiary nearby.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Pod of Oceania Ilyena's Avatar
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    I have had the same metal drink bottle since 2014, plus reuse anything I can. (Salacia, our straws are almost here!!)
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  14. #14
    Senior Member Euro Pod Echidna's Avatar
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    here is a visual example of how much plastic already floats about:


  15. #15
    Senior Member Pod of Texas Mermaid Delphinidae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mermaid Holly View Post

    How do you guys dispose of pet waste without using plastic bags? I always feel bad every time I use a plastic bag while cleaning up my bunny's litter box.
    Well, if you already have the bag, reusing it is better than just throwing it away. But if you're getting bags solely for the bunny, try paper bags. You can get brown paper lunch bags cheap at grocery stores. There are also some companies that make biodegradable pet waste bags, just do research and make sure that the product is actually biodegradable.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Pod of The South MerEmma's Avatar
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    They also make cornstarch biodegradeable pet bags. They're pricey and hard to find, but I usually try to get those if I ever see them!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Pod of Cali Mermaid Holly's Avatar
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    Biodegradable bags, huh? Sounds pretty cool, I'll have to check them out!

    Sent from my [device_name] using MerNetwork mobile app
    "Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me."

    Psalm 42:7

  18. #18
    This isn't exactly reducing plastic, there's an organization called ecobricks that upcycles it. People are taking plastic waste and stuffing it into a plastic bottle. Then they make stuff like seats out of them. There's also an ocean ecobrick that takes ocean plastic and puts it into two bottles joined together. People also use these for building things, but not with concrete. It's made with cob instead. www.ecobricks.org
    user formerly known as NaomiSilverBellz

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