Over this past year, single use plastic has been even more of a feature of our every day lives. As the country starts to re-emerge from lockdown restrictions, here are our five quickest, easiest and cheapest ways to reduce the amount of single use plastic you use when you’re out and about:
1. A reusable cup
Available pretty much everywhere, reusable cups for your on the go coffees and teas are a quick, easy and relatively cheap way to reduce your single use plastic. If you think about the coffee you grab on the way to work or after the school run and then one as a treat in the afternoon, you’re quickly looking at 40 cups a month that just sit in landfill.
And with many cafes offering discounts for bringing your own cup, you could quickly save enough to pay for the reusable cup!
2. A water bottle
This doesn’t have to be a swanky rose gold metal drinks bottle – it could just be the take out water bottle you bought the other day refilled again and again. With many places offering to fill water bottles with tap water for free (once restrictions have lifted they will be able to do this again), you could again save yourself a load of money as well as saving the planet.
3. A shopping bag
Many of us do this already – certainly since the charge for bags came in, but making sure we always have one to hand when we head out will mean those last minute impulse buys will not involve single use plastic.
4. A couple of old bread bags
If you have a few small bags tucked away, you will be surprised how often you use them – your breakfast croissant from the café or supermarket doesn’t need to go into a single use plastic (or paper) bag. Or grabbing some fruit and veg from the market stall as you go past – use these. You can use small cloth bags that are readily available but a few old plastic bread bags will do the trick just as well – reusing what you have is always a win!
5. Snacks from home
If you have kids, you’ll know that as soon as you step out the door, you’ll be hounded for snack, after snack, after snack. The costs can add up and so can the litter. Trying filling a tupperware with a few biscuits or homemade popcorn before you go – this will be so much better than single serving packs.
If you can remember one, two or even all five of the above each time you head out, you will be making a massive difference to the amount of single use plastic we get through.