This week team Reuseabox are taking part in The Big Plastic Count, organised by Greenpeace and Everyday Plastic. Households, schools and businesses across the country will be taking part, tallying up all their plastic waste for the week.
How does it work?
The Big Plastic Count is extremely straightforward. All you need to do is make a note each time you dispose of something plastic… that’s it! Once the week is over you submit your information on their website and they calculate your household’s carbon footprint. They also let you know what really happens to the plastic waste once it’s left your house.
There is a very helpful tally sheet included in the download pack. We have stuck up these tally sheets above all of our bins in the office, so our staff members can easily make a note of each plastic item they throw away.
Why is the count important?
The UK is currently using way too much plastic. We produce more plastic waste per person than almost any other country in the world (America is the only country worse). We’re told that recycling is the solution to plastic waste, however recycling alone cannot tackle the mountain of waste we produce. We are producing too much.
The reality is, most of us have no idea where our plastic waste ends up after we’ve put it out for recycling. There is currently not enough evidence revealing how much plastic UK households dispose of. This is why The Big Plastic Count was founded.
This year in 2022, the government will be deciding on targets to reduce plastic waste. By gathering as much evidence as we can of household plastic waste, we can push the government to put stricter measures in place to reduce single-use plastic and stop dumping waste in other countries.
The Plastic problem
The properties that make plastic so useful are the very same properties that make it impossible to break down naturally. It is extremely durable and lasts forever.
The colossal rate at which we produce and dispose of plastic is a very serious issue. It is a big pollution and waste problem, is damaging the environment, killing animals and even threatening our own health.
Plastic doesn’t biodegrade and so all it does is break down smaller and smaller, creating microplastics. These microplastics can be found in the food we eat, the water we drink and even the air we breathe.
When looking for ways you can help the plastic pollution crisis it can seem very daunting. However, small actions taken by millions of people can result in a great impact.
Small actions such as refusing single-use plastics, choosing reusables such as coffee cups and water bottles, making sure you use the three Rs of waste management, etc. can help you to play your part in the solution to reducing plastic. There are also many ways you can reduce plastic in your business or workplace, such as a plastic audit.
At a bigger scale we can help to influence our communities, businesses and our government to put measures in place to ensure we use less plastic. The Big Plastic Count is a great way to get involved at a larger scale, to persuade the government that serious action needs to be taken.
Plastic pollution is a very big issue we currently face in the UK. We are producing far too much and we cannot deal with the masses of waste we produce. This results in plastic not being recycled properly and our waste being dumped in other countries.
There are many things we can do as individuals and businesses to play our part in solving this issue. The Big Plastic Count is a great way for people to get involved and count the amount of plastic they use in a week. This information can then be used to get a more accurate view of how much plastic UK households get through in a week, and hopefully influence the government to put stricter measures in place.