For Clean Oceans – Helpful Tips On Living Green With The Blonde Nomads
Did you know that a whopping 91% of plastic isn’t being recycled! As avid lovers of all things nature and the ocean, we are passionate about making sure we do our bit to help reduce waste, especially in the form of single-use plastic. We find many people are not aware of just how bad this issue is. A few shocking stats I have come across lately shared by National Geographic include –
More than 5 trillion pieces of plastic are already floating in our oceans.
World plastic production per year has increased from 2.3 million tonnes in 1950 to 448 million tonnes in 2015.
Around the world, nearly a million plastic beverage bottles are sold every minute.
Estimates for how long plastic endures range from 450 years to forever – which means that it ALL still exists in some form SOMEWHERE on our beautiful planet.
More than 700 species of marine animals have been reported so far to have eaten or become entangled in plastic.
The average person eats 70,000 microplastics each year (shared via GlobalCitizen.org) …and yes, that one scared me too!
So with the hope that we can help educate and raise awareness on the importance of limiting plastic use, we have put together this list of Eco-friendly products that won’t blow your budget –
Re-purposed Plastic –
Clothing Brand Piping Hot have embraced the wonderful invention of Repreve fabric. Repreve contains recycled materials including plastic bottles – how cool is that?! By using Repreve in their new swimwear range Piping Hot have saved over 1.5 million bottles from landfill already. With plans to make all their products in a sustainable way, they are well on the way to fighting the war on waste! It was also great to see the benefits of using Repreve fabric instead of virgin material, which include –
Saving natural resources
Saves energy in the production process
Lowers greenhouse gas emissions and the use of chemicals
Diverts waste from landfill where it can end up in the ocean
We have been road testing this awesome new range of swimwear and are so impressed with the fun designs and vibrant colours. The fabric feels soft and you would have no idea that they are made from repurposed plastic. With the goal to make all their range not only sustainable but affordable, there is something for the whole family. Plastic bottles have never looked so good!!!! This epic range can be found in all Target stores.
Recycled Mats are another sustainable product that not only looks great but are made from Recycled Polypropylene (which is plastic that is often used in packaging and shopping bags). We have one of these funky mats and love using it outside our caravan or at the beach. They come in a variety of styles and sizes, are hard wearing and feel soft and ‘smooshy’ to sit on. We love that the mats feature original designs by Indigenous artists too. Our mat design symbolises the importance of the campfire as a meeting place, as well as a source of warmth and nourishment – which is something that resonates strongly with us. They re-purpose around 1 million plastic bags a year in the production of these plastic mats! – what legends!
Think Green – Reusable products
Investing in these environmentally friendly products is a great way to reduce your plastic use, they also make great gifts too! We have all heard about reusable Cloth shopping bags, as well as the good old Keep Cups for your morning coffee, but what about drinking straws? Do you make an effort to refuse a straw when at a restaurant or cafe? By refusing a straw or using a Stainless Steel Straw you are making a great difference towards limiting single-use plastic. Bees Wax Wraps, are also a goodie to use instead of plastic food wrap. I have a bit of an obsession with these wraps, not only for their awesome use but their lovely beeswax smell. Some other items we love to use are our Stainless Steel Lunch Boxes (these things just last and last) as well as the good old re-usable Water Bottles. Cloth Nappies, Washable Baby Wipes and Natural Rubber Dummies are all fantastic too.
Choose Natural Fibres
Hemp, Cotton and Bamboo – There are so many wonderful plant-based items on the market these days which will break down at the end of their life and not contribute to landfill, or pollute our oceans with micro-plastics. ‘Soap Berries’ make a great natural laundry detergent and nowadays you can easily find Bamboo Toothbrushes and Wooden Toys gracing the shop shelves, …And, have you seen this awesome wooden lego? (pictured below). Move over kids, I want to have a go!!
We love using our bamboo plates and cups! Made by Bobo & Boo, they are non-toxic and biodegradable as they are made from natural, renewable and sustainable bamboo. They come in a range of fun colours too and are perfect for our caravanning adventures. We often have what I call a ‘fun lunch’ which is a mix of colourful salad, veggies and fruit all on a plate, so when I saw their fun Bento style plate I had to get them too – the kids love it!
What else can you do?
Do you Recycle your household waste? The Australasian Recycling Label shows exactly what parts of food and product packaging are recyclable. There’s long been confusion around what people can recycle, especially if the packaging is made up of many different components. So this new labelling system (that is now printed on a lot of packaging) shows you what element of your waste you can recycle. You may also want to consider how your products are packaged at the time of purchase too eg. buy a packet of pasta in a box as opposed to a plastic packet.
Take 3 for the Sea
As proud ambassadors for Take3 we are collecting rubbish almost daily on our travels around Australia and help raise awareness by sharing their simple message which is – Whenever you’re at a beach, waterway or anywhere in the great outdoors, simply take 3 pieces of rubbish away with you and you’ve made a difference. Click here for more information on Take3. By making Eco-conscious choices, along with raising awareness with your friends and family by sharing articles like this one, more people will be aware and choose environmentally friendly products… and that my friends, is how we change the world. Thanks for reading and please share any tips or your favourite Eco-friendly products in the comments below.