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The A-Z of Living a Plastic-Free Life

By Nicola Saltman on September 15, 2016 in Other

Photo: Al Fabetical

Photo: Al Fabetical

Following Plastic Free July, you’ve probably heard all the hoo-ha about the scourge of plastic on our planet. This is a very real and scary problem that has been receiving much deserved public attention lately.

An estimated eight million tonnes of plastic enters our oceans each year, where it entangles and endangers wildlife. Single-use plastics, like bags, cup and straws, take a whole heap of resources to make, are used within minutes and then take hundreds of years to leave our environment. It’s sobering to think that every bit of plastic ever made still exists somewhere (and hopefully not in the gut of a poor unsuspecting turtle).

Check our A-Z list of simple ways that you can curb your plastic addiction every day…

A – Avoid over-packaged, processed, canned and frozen convenience foods like the bananas packaged in a polystyrene tray wrapped in cling film.

B – Ban the bag with Bondi Farmers Market and the local community folks at Blue Bondi Green. Show your support and follow @bluebondigreen on Instagram.

C – Cut cling wrap from your life. Store food in reusable containers or machine-washable cloth wrappers for the fridge and lunchbox.

D – Ditch disposable water bottles for reusable ones – they are readily available at supermarkets, homewares stores and sports retailers.

EF – Eat naked (foods, that is) and buy in bulk to reduce the need for unnecessary packaging.

G – Green-up your picnic with reusable picnic plates, cups and cutlery; or just BYO dishes from home.

H – Hemp bags are eco-friendly and highly durable alternatives to plastic bags.

I – Invest in a reusable coffee cup for your next caffeine hit. You may even score a discount from local cafes.

J – Jump online and pledge to be plastic free at www.secondnature.org.au.

KL – Keep our beaches litter-free. Take three pieces of rubbish with you when leaving the beach. Find out more at www.take3.org.au.

M – Make your own yoghurt from easy-make kits at the supermarket.

NO – Say ‘No’ to plastic bags at your local shop and use reusable bags instead.

P – Plastic bag free is the way of the future. Ask your local shop owner to go plastic bag free. Find out more at www.bluebondigreen.org.

Q – Quit using plastic containers altogether. Choose glass or steel for food storage instead.

R – Recycle soft plastics, like bread, pasta, rice, cereal and lolly bags, newspaper wrapping and old green bags at Coles and some Woolworths stores.

S – Straws suck. Literally. Next time, think before you drink (through a straw).

T – Take your reusable bags grocery shopping. It will send a strong signal to other shoppers.

U – Use social media to spread the word about plastic-free to inspire mates to join you. Remember to use the hashtag #plasticfree2016.

V – Volunteer for local activities or events to help ‘talk the walk’ on being plastic-free. Email secondnature@waverley.nsw.gov.au

W – Wash plastic sandwich and freezer bags, and dry them on a rack to reuse for another time.

Y – Say ‘YES’ to a legislative ban on plastic bags in NSW.

Z – Zero-waste is a challenge, but we’re committed to making it happen!

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