Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Simple Suggestion #162... Reuse and reuse and reuse your plastic

How Big Is That Widening Gyre of Floating Plastic?
If you've been following these moodlings for any length of time, you know that I'm concerned about the plastic buildup on our planet. Petroleum products in the form of bags, containers, coffee cup lids and islands in the ocean (ever heard of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch?) create issues all over the globe. See that yucky mess over there? So this is a rather strong suggestion I'm making...

Human beings have become rather dependent upon plastic... and unfortunately, many of us treat it like it's an unlimited resource which we are entitled to use -- and toss. But that kind of thinking is gumming up a lot of natural habitat, clogging waterways, killing wildlife... and how many plastic bags have you seen flying in the trees this spring? Ugh. So we need to be more mindful of our plastic... and make sure that it isn't single use, at the very least. Rather than freeing the majestic plastic bag that you see in this four-minute documentary, why not use those cloth bags?

When I was a kid, my mom saved our bread bags so we could take our lunches in them rather than buying more trendy 'baggies' with the 'fold lock top.' Now my girls take reusable containers for their lunches, but I still reuse plastic bags wherever possible. Below are my veggie freezer bags -- some of them date back to 2008, when I started blanching and freezing our backyard vegetables. After each use, they get washed and hung up to dry in the laundry room, then put away until next blanching season. No reason to buy brand new when these work just fine, thank you very much. It's simply called being mindful of our beautiful earth.

There are plenty of other ways to reuse plastic before it goes to the dump. Fortunately, in Edmonton, we will soon have a solid waste gasification plant that will turn those plastic bits into synthetic fuel rather than landfilling them... but synthetic fuel's carbon emissions mean there's still no reason to throw out plastic if we can avoid it, whether it's gasified or not.

So, please join me in my efforts to reuse... and reuse... and reuse...

And not just plastic...

P.S. Looking for more Simple Suggestions? Click here.

1 comment:

Laeli said...

Plastic is one of my major peeves in life.

Doesn't that big mass of it in the ocean break your heart? :(