A decade ago, finding alternative options to plastic was akin to searching for a needle in a haystack. Today, environmental challenges are more front and centre and society is pushing for more of a “take action” approach to reducing our reliance on plastic and other damaging products.
A recent report shows that four out of five Australians say we should act now on environmental problems. In a world overrun with plastic and environmental waste, that concept can seem daunting and easier said than done. In fact, 75 per cent of beach rubbish that washes up on our shores is plastic.
At EORTH, our primary objective is to provide you with alternative options to plastic, taking into consideration everything from the product itself to how it comes packaged. Plastic-free shopping is just one way you can reduce your impact on the environment.
We’ve put together our top five ways you can practice eco-conscious living in 2019 and reduce your reliance on plastic.
- Practice plastic-free retail therapy. From shampoo and body wash, to food savers and cutlery, and all of your laundry needs, there is an opportunity to switch to an environmentally friendly product. Not sure where to begin? Start by picking one item you’re running low on and purchase a zero-waste alternative. Before you know it, you’ll have your whole house shifted over to plastic-free options.
- Use glass or reusable coffee mugs. This may seem like a no-brainer but how often do you sit in a coffee shop with a disposable cup? Approximately 12,000 tons of coffee cups hit Australian landfills each year. If you’re settling in at the coffee shop with friends, ask for a ceramic mug. For those times when you’re out and about, be sure to add a reusable coffee cup to your bag, you’ll be ready to go anytime you need a caffeine fix. Added bonus? Your coffee will stay hot, longer!
- Carry a re-fillable water bottle. We are a lucky nation, unless you’re living in the outback, it’s pretty easy to find a water refill location, especially in high traffic locations. A refillable water bottle is a simple alternative to a plastic bottle. It’s now becoming more common to find a refill station at the airport.
- Switch to a bamboo toothbrush. If you were following our Plastic-Free January, you’ll know that more than 30 million plastic toothbrushes are used in Australia each year. One bamboo toothbrush will replace four plastic toothbrushes. Not to mention, when you need to get a new brush, the bamboo handle can be added to your compost bin or used in your garden as a plant marker — rather than adding it to our overflowing landfills.
- Carry a reusable produce bag. A reusable bag can easily slide into a purse or it can be slipped into a pocket. With so many styles of reusable bags out there, there’s no excuse to not have one on hand and ready to use while you’re grabbing a few groceries. Cotton Tote Bags not only look beautiful, they’re also great for carrying lots of items. While many states in Australia have banned plastic bags, it’s still not country-wide and should be a primary consideration as you look to be eco-conscious.
These may feel like simple shifts and you’re right — they are! Small things add up and together, we can take action by reducing our reliance on plastics and being more eco-friendly.
What alternatives to plastic are you using in 2019? Let us know in the comments below.