Is it just me or does it seem like there's been a marked increase in the number of themed "days" in the last few years. I'd like to know: how long has National Donut Day really existed? I'm all for free donuts and can endure a glut of pictures of other people's fried confections no problem. But this month, I'm excited to get behind a movement that means so much more than sweet treats — Plastic-Free July, an awareness campaign that started in Australia, but has gained traction throughout the world.
As stated on their site, Plastic-Free July aims to "raise awareness of the problems with single-use disposable plastic and challenges people to do something about it."
Here are some changes you can make to shift your habits from depending on plastic to making use of more Earth-friendly alternatives:
- Use your re-usable shopping bags every time you shop.
- Take your re-usable shopping bag collection a step further by taking your own produce bags to the store, too.
- Refuse plastic water bottles, and instead make it a habit to bring your own water bottle and re-fill it throughout the day. These are my favorite.
- Don't use plastic straws (or lids) when you eat out. Just drink from the glass.
- Mark special occasions with decorations other than balloons.
- Use glass tupperware with lids rather than cling wrap to store food.
- Check out Diva cups and banish plastic tampon applicators forever.
- Bring your own containers for take-out or leftovers from a restaurant.
- Bring your own travel mug for coffee or tea on the go.
- Line your trash cans and recycling bins with newspaper or paper bags.
- Opt for household supplies that come packaged in cardboard (or unwrapped!) rather than wrapped in plastic.
- For those things you can only buy in plastic, consider making your own. For instance, try your hand at whipping together some hummus.
For more information and to join over a million people in 130 countries practicing Plastic-Free July, register here.