A Plastic (Not So Fantastic) Future.
Single-use plastics are without a doubt one of the most annoying aspects of everyday life.
Nowadays, almost everything is wrapped in a soft plastic of some form and the only redeeming factor is that we could recycle them and do our bit for the environment. Now that’s all changed.As of November 2022, the recycling scheme used by Woolies and Coles,REDcycle collapsed.
In a statement, they said “What the future holds for REDcycle remains to be seen, but I know my team and I will always be dedicated to the cause, one that sees our waste become a resource and helps create a better environment for our children.”
Now thatREDcycle has ceased operation, no viable alternative has been presented to Australians who care about the environment anddo not want plastics to go into landfill.
So what can we do?
Unfortunately, given the news about REDCycle, the future is not looking great for recycling soft plastics. However, what remains constant is that landfill shouldn’t be an option. With this in mind, the responsibility now falls onto the consumer, YOU, to make conscious decisions about what you buy and how much plastic you consume. Often making small and long-lasting changes is good not only for the environment but for your conscience as well.
Here are a few ways to make more conscious decisions to reduce your consumption of soft plastics:
1. Buying Fruit & Veg
Most fruit and vegetables are packaged in soft plastic bags with plastic produce bags being offered at most supermarkets. There are ways to limit your use of these items and before you know it you won’t even think about needing them anymore.
2. Buying Packeted Foods
Buying foods that come in packets is unfortunately unavoidable. However, there are small steps you can take to reduce the amount of plastic you buy, rather than unrealistically eliminate it completely.
3. Buying Clothes Online
When purchasing clothes online, think about how much plastic is going to be sent your way, most items of clothing are wrapped in soft plastics thatnow cannot be recycled.
Thinking about what you really need versus what you actually want to buy is an important step when it comes to online shopping. If the items you want to buy have a store close by you, opt for a click-and-collect where you can bring your own bag and take them home rather than be sent all of the plastic. Also, check local clothes swap stores, charity shops and second-hand clothing markets before you buy more clothes.
Often you’ll find one-of-a-kind quirky items that are more unique than the latest fast fashion trends. Plus being that person at a market with a tote bag filled with bargains is so satisfying.
There are loads of local markets and secondhand shops around Australia, here are some of our faves:
When Can We Recycle Again?
Unfortunately, there has been no set date given for whenREDcycling’s recycling scheme will be up and running again and their last mid-2023 target was not reached.
The good news for NSW residents however, that localcompanyCurby is still able to recycle soft plastics (but only across four councils within the state).
We hope that brands like Curby set the tone for all states to follow in suit, as each state really needs to begin to pull their weight in finding a solution for this. To do this in your area,you could advocate for change by writingto your local council to get them to support the program in your local area, power of the people!
Creeping out from the underground is a huge movement of TikTok users who are a part of #ecotok and with over 780 million views it’s not so underground anymore.
Talking about everything from greenwashing, zero waste tips, and oil spills to COP27, TikTok has become an online grassroots community for people to not only access information but also participate in themselves.
Black Friday is so popular and demanding that it has now expanded to the weekend, to meet the needs and demands of consumers, wanting deals that are incredibly cheap and often hard to resist. Yet the question remains; how often are you buying household products just because it’s on sale?
Renting clothing is a great way to be more sustainable while also saving money and looking great. Fashion rental services and wardrobe-sharing platforms are becoming more and more popular. So, if you want to express yourself through fashion or just look amazing, without hurting the planet or your budget check out these clothing rental services.