Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Discussions on the interactions between components of the environment and their effects on all types of organisms.

Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Postby TheVat on April 22nd, 2021, 3:47 pm 

https://apnews.com/article/animals-ocea ... b7f5fd11b5

As today is Earth Day, and also marks a new virtual summit on global warming hosted by President Joseph Biden, it seems like a fitting time to open some new topics here on the environmental science forum.
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Re: Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Postby doogles on April 22nd, 2021, 4:49 pm 

Down here in Australia, we all seem to be adapting to the idea of taking our own bags to supermarkets. It's a start, and a very good one. We no longer receive half a dozen or so plastic bags with every shopping expedition.
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Re: Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Postby charon on April 22nd, 2021, 7:06 pm 

The UK started this a long time ago. Either bring your own bags (which I do) or pay for a bag there.
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Re: Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Postby TheVat on April 22nd, 2021, 8:31 pm 

We do that here, but I occasionally use a plastic bag the grocery offers, so we've got a few on hand for cat poo and litter clumps. I try to make one bag hold as much as humanly possible (or felinely possible), to minimize plastic waste. I just haven't found a good option on this -- stores no longer offer paper sacks, and if they did, they won't contain the odor and moisture as well or stay intact. Flinging it in the yard also presents problems, and carnivore feces is generally too acidic to make good compost.
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Re: Getting started: a thread on plastics cleanups

Postby Serpent on April 22nd, 2021, 9:35 pm 

I've had shopping bags for about 15 years. All the supermarkets have their own brand, (mostly made of recycled plastic) but the liquor store ones are best. They're $1-2 each, large, strong, washable, durable and stand up squarely for loading. Sometimes I forget and accept a bag at stores that offer it - useful to have on hand for garbage disposal. During the first lock-down of the pandemic, they were not allowing any bags into the stores and gave away free flimsy plastic ones. I've made use of them sparingly through the year. Then, I cottoned onto the idea of loading my purchases back into the cart and transferring them into my own bags and boxes in the parking lot. Now, I can take my own bags again.

Plastic containers can be put to other uses: yogurt and ice cream tubs are good for freezing food in, and make excellent plant pots, lasting several years of reuse. Single-serving fruit-cup or pudding containers are just the right size to hold seeding pellets. I use the zip-lock bags for sugar substitute to freeze a few slices of bread (diabetic takes two weeks to go through a loaf). I carry my drinking water (own tap-water, of course; I don't buy water I that don't know where it came from!) in a plastic mickey flask that once contained Captain Morgan's white rum (much to the amusement of hardware stock-boys) and reuse plastic bread bags for a hundred different things. Recycle what I can't use, and what I have used.

It's not good enough - not by a long chalk: I'm still buying and discarding and unconscionable quantity of the damn stuff. It's unavoidable. But some retailers, like the Bulk Barn, let you refill your own. People are catching on - at last.
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