Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Plastic free for November (feel free to join in!)

As long time readers may recall, last April I took a pledge to be plastic free for 21 days, and it went rather well. I didn't purchase anything that was made of or came wrapped in plastic (except for an odd hiccup or two) as I was sick to death of it coming into my house.

I've mostly stuck with it, but over the last few months have become a bit lazy (having four wisdom teeth out will do that to a girl), and slowly but surely the plastic has been creeping back into my house. Dip containers, juice containers, plastic-wrapped foods - you name it, we've got it. It's insidious, and bloody everywhere, and I am putting my foot down!

No more plastic! I'm making November the new Plastic Free Month. It's disgusting that we scar the earth by drilling for oil (a rapidly dwindling resource), expend huge amounts of energy in processing the oil to turn it into plastic, then manufacturing it, packaging it, transporting and distribution it, polluting heavily the air, the oceans, the rivers and the earth as we go, and then once we get the plastic home we throw it in the friggin' bin. ENOUGH!

My pledge is going to be three-fold:
1 - I shall refrain from purchasing anything that is made of or is packaged in plastic for a month;
2 - I shall try to minimise all waste created for the month, and only purchase products in packaging that can be recycled;
3 - I shall crap on about it here, in the hope of inspiring others.

This does mean that my purchasing over the next month will be limited mostly to food, but that's quite ok as I have enough stuff as is, and I'll be saving money over the start of the silly season.

Now for the interactive bit - who's with me? Trust me, it's easy and green - think of it as an early Christmas present to the earth, as we eshew unsustainable practices, and focus on recycling, reusing and reducing. Now, before you start freaking out and begin wailing "I can't do it, the damnable stuff is everywhere!", I think it's only fair to allow a few caveats. Mine, for example, are plastic lids on glass bottles, plastic linings in canned goods, and plastic-wrapped medicines if we fall ill. I'm not going to beat myself up over any of those, although I'll try and avoid them where I can. I think the key to making this work is making active choices whenever you can, and not sweating the smaller, unavoidable instances.

I'll help you all along by posting menu and recipe suggestions, as well as plastic free Christmas ideas. So c'mon! Sign up, and let's be crazy and plastic free together! I promise, I'll blog about it every day as we go!


  1. Yeap I agree. It's everywhere. I minimise plastic in my shopping, actually all packaging. I got cranky with the woman who sold me my wallet - see my most recent post - because she insisted I take the box. I insisted she deal with the box. It went on, nicely, for a bit and when I saw she didn't understand I took the box and it will be painted and store things - or used to wrap a Christmas present. Food stuff is hard though - you're right about dips and sour cream and milk and stuff. We go through about 12-16 litres of milk a week and it's more economical to buy it in large containers - but they're plastic. I drink from a metal water bottle and refill it from the tap. I don't understand why people BUY water in 600ml bottles. Do you know the mark-up on this stuff? Good for you. I can't promise to be plastic free, but I will work on it, be mindful of it and have a little project on the boil to show you, if I can get myself organised in less than 21 days. Are you starting today?

  2. Thanks, Katie. I'll be starting on the 1st of November. Join in, join in!

  3. Anonymous6:32 pm

    I'd love to add your posts to the Plastic-free Posse on my Fake Plastic Fish blog (http://www.fakeplasticfish.com). Will you be labeling all your plastic-related posts "Plastic free"? I can link to that label.

    I agree with all your caveats except for the one about cans. The BPA lining in cans is actually more toxic for us than the BPA in plastic Nalgene bottles, according to the Environmental Working Group. That's because the high heats at which foods are canned. We avoid all canned goods in our home and instead opt for fresh produce, dried beans, and foods packaged in glass. Are those options for you?

    I've been going plastic-free for over a year now and have a list that might be helpful:



  4. count palazzo seahorse in! i have had enough of the tides of plastic coming into the house too.

    good on you jorth :) come over for a cup of tea - real tea in a real cup!

  5. I'll make an effort in November and think of you. It all start with awareness!
    Looking forward to reading/trying your recipes!


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