Plastic Free July 2021 - Are you up for the challenge?
Want to take concrete steps to help save the earth from drowning in plastic?
Well the timing couldn’t be more perfect for Plastic Free July 2021.
Efforts to sway people from using plastic products were derailed by the coronavirus pandemic. Since the pandemic, single-use plastic consumption rose 250%-300%, driven by personal protective equipment, disposable food ware and packaging for online deliveries.
What is the Plastic Free July Challenge?
Plastic Free July is an annual global movement that encourages millions of people to cut back on single-use plastics whether at home, work or events. By using less single-use plastics, we can do our part for future generations and our planet. Sign up for the challenge to get some ideas on how to take baby steps to plastic free-living.
What started as a humble office challenge in Perth, Australia in 2011, the initiative soon gained traction with people who are deeply concerned with the state of the environment. In 2018, Rebecca Prince-Ruiz together with her small team, established the Plastic Free July Foundation, an independent and non-profit organization.
In 2018, the movement grew to over 120 million people signing up and taking concrete steps to reduce single-use plastic. In July 2020, there were over 326 million people from 177 countries who took part in the Plastic Free July Movement.
Why sign up?
Through this annual event, millions of people will not only be aware of plastic pollution, but they will gain more ideas on how to do their part by making small changes in their lifestyle. Small steps have a higher chance to be sustainable in the long run. Who knows, they might encourage their friends to sign up and take part too.
Since most produced plastics deteriorate up to 450 to 1000 years, and never fully decompose, minimizing the use of single-use plastic is essential to lessen plastic pollution. Over time, plastics that deteriorate into smaller particles known as microplastics pollute the ocean and the air we breathe in that can negatively affect our health. According to various research, in the year 2018, there are over 90% of plastics that were not reused.
Plastic waste has killed around 100,000 marine species and over 1 million seabirds. And for humans? We individually inhale around 70,000 microplastics yearly.
How to take part in the Plastic Free July Movement?
Getting the facts right about plastic pollution is one thing, but true change can only be seen by making the right choices.
The next step is to choose sustainable products to use daily such as reusable plates, cups, and cutlery. Supporting local stores using sustainable products is also great for they can help in spreading awareness of the Plastic Free Movement and assist in reducing plastic pollution.
Ready to take the challenge?
5 steps to avoid plastic:
To start your Plastic Free July 2021 journey, here are five steps to a plastic-free living:
1. Use reusable cups and bottles
Need coffee to start your day? Ask your barista if you can use your cup or tumbler for your first cup of coffee. Your favorite cafe will probably be eager to indulge you with this simple request. Whenever outside, bring your reusable water bottle to quench your thirst.
2. Use alternative products
Simple steps such as using RiceStraws™ for your milk tea, using wooden cutlery or even saying no to plastic cutlery for food delivery can go a long way in reducing plastic. RiceStraws™ are the best alternative to plastic straws. It’s 100% made of natural products and a huge bonus too that they are turtle-friendly.
3. Ditch the plastic bag when you shop
The tote bag is now the ethical fashionista’s best friend! It comes in pretty handy too when you’re shopping for clothes. Here at Ecosprout, we’re trying to reduce our plastic dependence too by packing most, if not all fresh produce in brown paper bags. We’re constantly looking for ways to ditch plastic bags completely. If you have any ideas, we’d be excited to hear them. Drop us a message.
4. Learn to Say No
Make it your favorite word this July. It might come as a surprise how often we accept plastic packaging in our daily lives without even realizing it.
5. Be Ready
The easiest way to avoid single-use plastic is to spot where you use it most and come up with other options. Planning a coffee date with your bestie? Bring your reusable coffee-cup and place it in your tote bag. Always buying snacks wrapped in plastic? Spend a few minutes each day to prepare some healthy snacks like carrot sticks, or frozen strawberries and pop them in reusable containers.