5 Habits to End Plastic Pollution

April 14, 2018

For those of us who have been plugged into the sustainability movement for some time, it can be disheartening to look around and see so many people with little regard for critical environmental issues. But the power in events like Earth Day remains its ability to focus our attention at this moment in time and bring everyone into the conversation. This year’s theme: end plastic pollution

An out-of-control problem, Earth Day Network notes how addicted to plastic we are: “Currently about 300 million tons of plastic are produced each year to make bags, bottles, packages, and other commodities for people all over the world. Unfortunately, only about ten percent of this plastic is properly recycled and reused.” Single-use, disposable items that are not essential cause enormous strain on our world—including poisoning and injuring marine life, disrupting human hormones, and contaminating and clogging water supplies to name a few catastrophic consequences.

For our part, we’re committed to helping individuals make better choices and take steps to living a more sustainable life. The damage has been done and habits are now deeply ingrained over generations, so we can’t just flip a switch and expect magical change overnight. But no matter where you are on the path to sustainable living, keep challenging yourself and those around you to choose healthier routines—for yourself and for the planet.

Get brave with our "fearless five" challenge — five changes that anyone who wants to make a significant reduction of plastic in their life has the ability to accomplish right away. 

Take Your To-Go Water Bottle

One-time use plastic water bottles are our number one enemy. We can’t think of anything more wasteful when you can always have a reusable bottle at your fingertips, filled with fresh tap water.

Be Picky About Packaging

When you consume goods, pay attention to packaging. Refuse to buy produce that’s shrinkwrapped. If it’s got to be wrapped, make sure to choose the item whose container or wrap can be recycled or better yet, is biodegradable or compostable. It’s one of the reasons we love Alter Eco chocolates: besides being delicious and fair trade, it’s packaging is designed to degrade or be recycled!

Chemical-Free Cleanups

Most cleaners in the supermarket aisles are just full of harsh chemicals developed in a lab. You can achieve a clean home with toxin-free, natural ingredients. We love ingenious tools tool like harnessing the scrubbing power of walnut shells in scouring pads (instead of plastic fibers), which biodegrade after use.

Reusable Bags: Always at Your Fingertips

We never go to the supermarket without our own produce bags and reusable carrying bags. Having a supply in places like your car's glove box, hanging on a hook at near your front door, and other similar places means you'll never need to ask for a plastic bag again.

Find Plastic-Free Lunch Solutions

Recyclable paper sandwich bags and fabric lunch totes divert tons of waste from landfills. Do you need another reason? EcoLunchbox estimates your family could save on average $450 a year by not buying all that plastic for packing your lunch.

Bonus Tip: Try On Eco-Aware Clothes

Our apparel suppliers recognize that materials matter. That’s why designers like United By Blue are using natural fibers grown without chemicals that require less resources to produce each garment. In our next post, we'll cover what to look for.

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