Reducing the amount of plastic you use needn’t be hard. With this post, BRAG kicks off a series of tips on how to do this, one tip at a time, and in no particular order of priority, so you can gradually introduce plastic-reducing changes into your routine. And we’d love to hear your tips, too.
Tip no. 1: Carry cutlery in your bag, and refuse offers of plastic knives, forks and spoons in food outlets. If you work in an office, keep a plate, bowl, glass and cutlery in your desk.
China has recently announced that it will be taking less recycling from the UK. One of the main reasons for this change in policy is that much of the recycled material China receives is contaminated, meaning it is of poor quality or includes items that cannot be recycled, or that are difficult and expensive to sort for recycling.
A recent article on the Recycle Now website shows what we in the UK can do to improve the quality of what we put in our recycling bins. It also offers tips on what you can recycle and where to find your nearest recycling centre. To read the article, click here.
Friends of the Earth (FoE) has launched #PlasticFreeFriday, a campaign to encourage people to stop using single-use plastic products.
FoE says that if we encourage enough people to make small changes to their lives, we can cut down the amount of plastic pollution in our environment – and send a message to companies and governments that they need to act too. Continue reading
The BBC has announced that it plans to ban single-use plastics by 2020, after the television series Blue Planet II highlighted the devastation wrought by plastic pollution in the seas.
Throwaway plastic cups and cutlery will be scrapped at BBC sites by the end of this year, followed by plastic containers in canteens by 2019.
The Scottish Parliament has also announced that it plans to ban plastic straws, following similar announcements by restaurants including Pizza Express, Wagamama and JD Wetherspoon.
For further information, click here.
Greenpeace has launched a petition to persuade supermarkets to follow retailer Iceland’s lead and get rid of plastic packaging. By dispensing with plastic packaging, supermarkets can set an example of how to significantly reduce the amount of single-use plastic produced, according to the environmental NGO.
To sign the petition, click here.
Ecover, a manufacturer of household cleaning products, has launched a washing-up-liquid bottle made with 50% plastic waste that has washed up on and been collected from the beaches of Rio de Janeiro. The remaining 50% is recycled plastic. Continue reading
Environment Minister Michael Gove has just launched a public consultation about introducing a bottle deposit scheme in England. The news follows the delivery of a bottle deposit petition, an initiative of Surfers Against Sewage, to 10 Downing Street. The petition attracted 250,000 signatures, calling on the minister to help protect our oceans and beaches from plastic pollution. Continue reading
BRAG members turned out in force for the Brentford Festival in Blondin Park on 3 September. The BRAG stand was devoted to plastic waste pollution, with display boards (see below) showing the devastating effects of waste plastic, especially in the oceans, rivers and seas, and how it affects wildlife.
The groundbreaking documentary A Plastic Ocean will be shown at the One Over the Ait pub at Kew Bridge this Sunday, 10 September, from 3pm to 4.45pm. Places are limited; to secure your place, register for the screening here.
The screening is part of the Plastic Ocean Festival, which has been showcasing a series of events from April to September 2017 in London incorporating film screenings of A Plastic Ocean, marine and riverine clean-ups, stand up paddleboarding, and educational talks by scientists and the team. Continue reading
Avani, a company in the Philippines, has developed an alternative to plastic bags that is truly biodegradable – and safe for animals to eat. Called Eco-Bags, the bags are made with cassava root mixed with vegetable oil, and are compostable and biodegradable. They can also be dissolved in less than 150 days when discarded in water. Avani aims to create a range of other eco-friendly products normally made with plastic, including takeout containers, disposable cups and plates.
For more information, see http://www.avanieco.com/product/eco-bags