If we continue with our current habits of plastic consumption and pollution, it is predicted that there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans by 2050. So it’s great to see people coming up with inventions like this that can reduce the amount of plastic floating in the sea. Solutions to plastic pollution should always be praised and it’s great that their aim is to clear the ocean of plastic by 2050. However, we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that the only real solution is to use less plastic in the first place, particularly single-use disposable plastic.
In the video above they say the great Pacific garbage patch is three times the size of the UK, but I’ve also found this German video that describes it as ten times the size of Germany and this article that suggests it is the size of the US. Whatever it’s size, it is clear that something needs doing to eradicate and prevent this pollution that is killing our wildlife, working its way into our food chain and slowly suffocating our planet.
A great way to get involved and make some new habits into the bargain, is to take part in Plastic Free July. This Western Australia initiative started in 2011 and has spread in popularity until now millions of people in over 70 countries worldwide participate.
If shunning all plastic for the whole of July seems like a daunting task, then why not make a pledge to give up the ‘Big 4’ for the month instead. The Big 4 single-use disposable plastics are takeaway cups, plastic bags, straws and plastic drinks bottles. These can easily be eliminated by taking cloth bags to do your shopping, using a reusable cup and bottle and saying ‘no’ to straws.
In our house, we would find it impossible to be totally plastic-free for the whole month, because we’re limited in our bulk options. This means that pasta, noodles, pulses etc all come in plastic bags, though we do our best to buy them in the biggest bags we can find to at least reduce our packaging. However, our pledge for Plastic Free July 2017 is to really make that extra bit of effort to reduce our plastic consumption further. This might mean taking the time to make our own pasta this month or doing without something we enjoy. I’ll let you know how we get on.
I recently started a petition on 38 Degrees to campaign for a ban on styrofoam packaging and incentives for businesses to use more sustainable and environmentally-friendly options. As part of Plastic Free July, if you could also sign and share my petition on your social media channels, I’d be very grateful.
Have you made a pledge for Plastic Free July yet? What have you pledged? Let me know in the comments.