In our last installment of Living Plastic Free, we cover a few less thought off areas of our lives! I hope you have found this to be helpful, we have enjoyed learning more ourselves and are looking forward to doing another over haul in our practices @ HHDS. Involving this big change please watch here for BIG NEWS COMING SOON!
Plastic-Free Pet Care
- Choose natural cat litter.
- Choose pet toys/furniture made from natural materials instead of plastic.
- Avoid plastic bowls.
- Buy secondhand pet supplies instead of new.
- Learn to make homemade pet food without much plastic.
Get it Fixed!
- Repair things when they break.
- Acquire necessary plastic items used instead of new.
- Plastic cat litter boxes and cat carriers via Freecycle and thrift shops
- Computer monitorfrom Craigslist
- Crock pot
- Power strips via Freecycle
- Laptop computerfrom secondhand electronics store
Packing and Shipping Materials
- Request zero plastic packaging when ordering online.
- Get off mailing lists to reduce plastic envelope windows.
- Get online billing
In the Office
- Make your own glue. homemade wheat paste that really works.
- Avoid disposable plastic pens.
Electronics & Entertainment
- Look for secondhand electronics, games, and toys first.
- Choose refurbished equipment from a certified e-steward.
- Take care of what you have already/Repair it
- Avoid buying new CDs and DVDs.
They are made from polycarbonate plastic, after all. Instead, I download music and movies and borrow DVDs from Netflix or the library.
- Learn to recycle old disks.
- Choose healthier electronics.
- Find DIY solutions for techno needs.
Gift Giving and Receiving
- Learn strategies for green gift-giving. Experiences are the best option!
- Consider giving charitable gift cards.
- Request plastic-free gifts for yourself.
- Find ways to wrap gifts without plastic tape.
Holidays and Entertaining
- Bring your own beverage container & ustensils to parties and events.
- Throw a Zero Waste party.
- Re-think your Christmas tree.
Most artficial trees are made from toxic PVC. Opt for a real, sustainably-grown and harvested tree, a live tree that can be planted, or an artificial tree made from natural materials. There are “trees” made from recycled cardboard, wood, or even recycled glass bottles.
- Skip holiday plastic tchotkes.
No New Plastic Clothing
- Choose natural fibers.
So much new clothing these days is made from synthetic materials with names like: polyester, acrylic, lycra, spandex, nylon.
- Shop thrift stores.
- Make your own clothes.
- Look for plastic-free shoes.
- Choose ethical underwear.
Camping and Outdoors
- Choose plastic-free camping equipment.
Avoid unnecessary plastic around the house
- Stop buying plastic water filter cartridges unless necessary.
If You Do Nothing Else
- Avoid the Worst Plastics
If you do nothing else, try to steer clear of Polyvinyl Chloride (#3 PVC), Polystyrene (#6 PS), & Polycarbonate (#7 Other). PVC is found in many, many products and causes a whole host of environmental problems. Read my post about the problems of PVC. PS contains styrene, which is toxic to the brain and nervous system. PC contains BPA. Read more about BPA here. If you must use plastic, make sure it’s not #3, #6, or #7 polycarbonate. (Note: #7 is a catch-all for many types of plastic that doesn’t fit into the first six categories. Biodegradable plastic is also labeled #7. So when in doubt, ask.)