Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Plastic Facts

This week we started our first sustainability challenge. It seems like an easy one; No new plastic bags. I say no new bags because if you currently have plastic bags, throwing them away only creates more waste. Did you know we are the second highest waste producing country in the world? Reusing them is much more energy efficient than recycling them!
We know plastic bags are bad. There has been a lot of media, campaigning and discouraging of plastic bag usage. Why? Here are some of the nasty little facts.....

1.8.7 plastic checkout bags contain enough embodied petroleum energy to drive a car 1 kilometre.
2. It is estimated world wide that 1 trillion bags are used and discarded every year.
3.Australians use 3.92 billion plastic bags a year, that's over 10 million new bags being used every day.
4.Australians dump 7,150 recyclable plastic bags into landfills every minute or 429,000 bags every hour. 50 million per year!
5.If 50 million plastic bags were made into a single plastic sheet, it would be big enough to cover the Melbourne CBD.

I did my weekly grocery shop today with 3month old in tow. I went armed with my Eco bags but I had made a poor miscalculation. Vege bags! I normally try and put larger veges on their own and watch the checkout assistants cast a disapproving eye at the little particles of vegetable that now litter their conveyor belt. Today however, I needed to buy some products that don't lend themselves to naked conveyor belt surfing. The only alternative was plastic bags. I know I have seen other alternatives and I will attempt to find them and link to them later in the week. Please feel free to comment with any you know of underneath.

So day 2 I must say has been a fail on my part.

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