Plastic is everywhere. It is one of the most useful and most harmful synthetic products available. It can seem almost impossible to stop using plastic all together since so many everyday items are made of it. Wipe Out Plastic is an organization that is working to remove plastic from the oceans. You can do your part in this mission by following these eight guidelines for reducing the amount of plastic you use.
1. Choose Reusable Water Bottles
Forget a reusable water bottle on vacation? If you come ziplining with Skyline Eco-Adventures, you can purchase our reusable, stainless steel water bottles made by Liberty Bottleworks. Liberty Bottles are recyclable, made in the US, and recycle nearly all of their waste. Investing in a reusable water bottle reduces consumption on single-use plastic water bottles.
2. Use Reusable Shopping Bags
Markets around the world are starting to realize the plastic waste issue that is threatening our oceans. At the checkout counter, there are opportunities to purchase a reusable bag and save it for later. If you already have reusable bags, try keeping a stash in your car, that way you always have them ready.
3. Buy in Bulk
Many bulk item stores use a lot of plastic, however, bulk item packaging can sometimes have less plastic than many smaller stores. Some stores may even let you bring your own containers to weigh and package your food.
4. Say No to Plastic Straws and Cutlery
There are many to-go ware brands of bamboo cutlery that provide a pouch for all of the utensils you may need on the go. When buying takeout food, skip the plastic cutlery and use your own reusable pack of utensils. Some people will even ask restaurants to hold their food until they get there with their own to-go bowls to reduce potential styrofoam and plastic to-go container waste.
5. Bring Your Own Coffee Cup
When you bring your own coffee cup or mug, some cafes may provide a discount on your coffee drink! Not only can you save money and reduce single-use coffee cup waste, but you look cool with your personal to-go thermos too!
6. Ditch Plastic Produce Bags
Plastic produce bags can easily find their way into our oceans, sometimes resembling a jellyfish. Juvenile sea turtles often feed on jellyfish, and sometimes cannot tell the difference between plastic or their favorite snack. Reusing the bags you already have, or finding reusable mesh produce bags are a great alternative to constantly using new plastic produce bags.
7. Shop Mindfully & Choose Farmer’s Markets
Farmer’s markets are a great way to meet local community members and farmers, and learn about the unique fruits that grow in a certain place. You can support the local community and enjoy fresh produce for a lesser cost than at the supermarket, and you know the food is being grown in that area, not flown to that area. A lot of the produce at farmer’s markets are farmed using organic methods, or are completely organic. Finding ripe produce that is in season is key as well.
8. Follow “Plastic Free” Social Media Accounts
The best way to reduce your plastic consumption is to educate yourself and see what other people are doing around the world. We encourage you to follow social media influencers who are plastic-free such as @lifewithoutplastic @plasticfreemermaid or @wipeoutplastic, and join non-profits like Surfrider Foundation and Sustainable Coastlines to get involved in your community to help our oceans. Education is everywhere, and there is a big plastic free movement already happening! You can do it too!
About the Author: Voted the #1 Zipline Company in Hawaii, Skyline Eco-Adventures prides ourselves on not only providing amazing zipline adventures for you and your family, but also caring for the islands on which we operate. For more information on Skyline Eco-Adventures, click to www.zipline.com.