We all want to participate actively in making the world a better place. Avoiding plastic buildup in the environment is one of the significant steps toward the objective. We are well aware of how harmful plastic products are to the environment. We all need to work earnestly to eliminate plastic pollution from the planet. The primary problem is that we don’t know where to start. The change is significant, but it has to start from minuscule steps. Every small step makes the most critical difference, especially when practiced daily. If you are thinking about how to avoid plastic in your daily life, read the article to explore some easy but effective ways.
Plastic is non-biodegradable; it does not degrade and mix with the soil. It has remained as it is for hundreds of years and acted as a pollutant for hundreds of years. Scientists have been thinking a lot about how we can minimize the use of plastic and have figured out multiple ways. But the change has to start from the basic level in society. The change has to start with us. Plastic pollutes the topsoil layer and clogs the sewage system of the cities that, causes water pollution. Many animals try to eat plastic waste like bottles or shopping bags, and they die or fall sick. Plastic buildup is one of the major causes of oceanic and marine pollution. Plastic also features carcinogenic properties and causes significant health issues in humans and other animals.
Every time we read about how much plastic is used in our daily life and how harmful it is for the Earth and its living beings, we are tempted to switch to plastic-free options. But the question is, how can we do that? Though we pledge to use lesser plastic, the ways to achieve the same still need to be clarified. The pertinent question before us is – how can we reduce the use of plastic in our daily life? The answer is simple – be the change yourself. Start from home.
We know the problem, but the roads to the solution are challenging. Plastic has occupied such a significant part in our daily lives that eliminating it will take effort and alternative ways. Here are some of the proven ways to reduce plastic consumption in everyday life:
Big shoppers are one of the significant sources of plastic pollution across the globe. Plastic bags are used for almost every shopping need. Plastic bags take hundred years to break down but a few minutes to discard. If we switch over to reusable shopping bags for shopping, it will reduce the use of plastic drastically. The biggest challenge is to remember to carry them every time you go shopping. The best way to remember to take the bag is to keep one of them at every place. Keep one in the car, one at the front door, one in your laptop bag, and in every possible place where you can easily pick it up when needed. This way, you will never forget to carry reusable shopping bags, and you can eliminate the chances of bringing unwanted plastic bags home.
Carrying lunch to your workplace, school, or study area is the best practice for your health. You will always have access to healthy food. But what you eat is as vital as which container you use for packing the lunch. Eating food in plastic containers often deteriorates the food value, especially if the plastic container is not of food grade. Using reusable containers for carrying lunch will not only keep the food fresh and healthy but also reduce the use of plastic containers. Stainless steel or glass boxes can be ideal for having lunch.
Disposable plates, cutlery, and straws form a significant part of the plastic built on the planet. They cause the worst type of plastic pollution. They form most plastic litter, and the animals often eat them up. Disposable plastic plates or cutlery pile up in landfills. They also choke the sewage system and enter the waterways. Not only do they cause land pollution, but also water pollution. Using stainless steel forks and knives is a great alternative. You can carry them in a travel case whenever going out to eat to prevent the usage of plastic cutlery.
Do not use plastic shopping bags when packing any edible items. Use a jute or a cloth bag when shopping for fresh veggies or fruits. They are better options and organic. If we can skip the usage of plastic bags for packing or shopping, it will considerably reduce plastic usage and, thus, plastic pollution. Even if the stores offer plastic bags for fruits and vegetables, avoid them by carrying your bags. It is a very easy step but equally hard to follow. Simply having a cloth bag for veggies shopping or packing can reduce the usage of plastic bags drastically.
Our kitchen contains plenty of plastic containers and storage bottles. The place comprises a significant part of the plastic waste produced in the kitchen. Also, plastic bottles cannot be reused and can cause toxicity when food is tired in them. The best alternative is to use glass bottles. Glass jars and containers can store cooked food and raw ingredients like spices. Glass is unreactive and safe for storage. It is easy to recycle glass bottles, and they serve for life. Replace the plastic containers with glass jars, and quickly reduce plastic usage in the kitchen.
Plastic Water bottles are a significant source of plastic pollution on the Earth. Plastic water bottles are not at all eco-friendly. Though the companies claim to recycle plastic water bottles, that only applies to some used bottles. The best option is to stop the usage of non-reusable plastic bottles. Plastic can prove to be a potential carcinogen. It is advisable to let any edible, including water, come in contact with plastic. Instead of using plastic bottles, if you can use reusable stainless steel or glass water bottles, you can significantly reduce plastic usage and pollution. Also, the toxins would not come in contact with the water you drink. It is beneficial both for the health and the Earth. Use refillable metal bottles for storing water.
One of the best ways to use less plastic is to switch to alternative packing materials. Humans invented plastic. Before plastic came into existence, humans used various organic materials such as paper or jute as packing materials. It is time to bring back those eco-friendly packaging materials into existence to alleviate the excessive dependence on plastic. We can use eco-friendly cardboard packaging for shipping materials worldwide. For milk and other liquid edibles, one can use reusable containers. As an essential step, we can reduce fast food consumption because all of that comes in plastic. This is also an excellent way to ensure good health and stay away from the overuse of plastic. Eat healthily. Food brands should also consider the usage of alternative packing strategies for their food products.
Every time you go to star bucks or any cafe, they offer you your favorite cappuccino or latte in a plastic cup. Have you ever thought about how many plastic cups an average person uses just for dining coffee in cafes throughout their lifetime? You can drastically reduce the number and contribute to a better Earth by carrying your reusable coffee cups every time you go to the cafeteria. Remembering to carry it is the biggest challenge ever. You can always keep a reusable coffee cup in your car. This way, remembering becomes more accessible.
The whole world is prioritizing sustainability over everything else. You, too, can join the movement. Use only those products that generate the least waste. Shop in bulk at a time, so you don’t have to use packing material multiple times. Use clothes and cosmetic products that use minimum plastic. These are very tiny but remarkably effective ways to use less plastic. Choose products that last longer. Whenever discarding materials, always do a trash audit. If you find any recyclable or reusable materials, do not throw them away; instead, use them for the better.
We know how hazardous and harmful plastic is to our environment. There are only two approaches to the question of how to avoid plastic pollution – first is less consumption of plastic, and second is appropriate recycling of plastic. There is significant research on how to recycle plastic suitably so that they cause less pollution. But there is no better medium than to limit the usage of plastic. Every day with miniature steps, we can minimize plastic use, and together, it will lead to an extensive global change. With very simple changes in our everyday practices, we can bring massive changes. Let us join hands and work together to use less plastic.