The energy crisis is focusing attention on how we wean ourselves off oil and gas, and single use plastics are one oil based product we need to reduce our dependence on.
The public are being invited to participate in a campaign called ‘The Big Plastic Count’, which takes place between May 16th to 22nd to get a feel for just how much single use plastic we use.
The Big Plastic Count is a joint project between Everyday Plastic and Greenpeace, aiming to uncover the truth about how much we throw away and what happens to it – and prove that bold action is needed to solve the growing plastic problem. The Big Plastic Count is the UK’s biggest ever investigation into household plastic waste.
City to Sea is supporting this project and you can visit their website to find out how you can get involved: www.citytosea.org.uk/the-big-plastic-count.
We have noticed that some local eateries have reduced their reliance on single use plastics by switching to single-use bioplastic take away packaging product, of which Vegware is an example, which claims to be compostable. However, these products take significant time to degrade at normal temperatures so cannot be home composted. If dropped they will remain as litter for years and can therefore be just as hazardous to wildlife as oil based single use plastics. They are not accepted in grey recycling bins as they cannot be recycled and they are not accepted in food waste caddies because there is too much likelihood this will lead to contamination with similar looking non-compostable plastic products. This is why plastic free communities encourage local businesses to offer a refill service for take-aways and encourage businesses to incentivise customers to bring their own refillable containers for take away and to use reusable cutlery and crockery for their in-house service. If you are stopping in town for a drink or a meal, give your support to those establishments that offer an in-house service on reusable cups, plates and cutlery and have a plastic free alternative to individual sauce sachets!
Let’s look forward to a future without so much single use plastic. Joining in with the Big Plastic Count could be a good way to come up with a plan to cut your dependence on single use plastic and help you prepare for the next City to Sea event, National Refill Day, on June 16th. We are hoping to repeat last year’s plastic free picnic in the town centre where you bring your own containers into town and buy your picnic from participating takeaways. Watch this space!
Plastic Free Letchworth Tea