Pexels / Karolina Grabowska
The “word” was plastics in the sixties, but today, we are energized to figure out how to use less plastics.
In the movie The Graduate, young, college-graduate Benjamin Braddock receives a key bit of advice about the future, just one word—plastics. That was 1967, and indeed the business of plastics exploded, so much that today eliminating single-use plastics is a significant conversation about bettering our home, Mother Earth.
From plastic straws to plastic water bottles and a virtual sea of plastic take-out containers that are the result of more running and less cooking. If you look at just your own habits and then consider you are one of 7.9 billion people in the world, you can see that it’s time to make choices on how to use less plastic in your daily life. We’ve worked some suggestions into this story to show you how you can use less plastic in your daily life.
✔ plastic straws
✔ plastic water bottles
✔ disposable coffee cups with plastic lids
✔ plastic bags
✔ plastic coffee stirrers
✔ plastic wrap
✔ plastic take-out containers
✔ plastic cups, utensils and plates
It’s estimated that 100,000 marine animals perish each year due to plastics in the ocean, like bags and straws. According to plasticfreechallenge.org, we produce roughly 300 million tons of plastic each year, and half of it is disposable. Globally we only recycle about ten to 13 percent of it. The rest are ending up in landfills and in our oceans.
Take a look at how some hospitality businesses are dealing with this issue. My favorite Laguna Beach luxury resort, Montage, switched to bamboo toothbrushes and combs as guest toiletries to eliminate single-use plastics. They’ve also eliminated newspapers and print magazines, offering guests a press app upon check-in that provides thousands of publications worldwide—no more newspapers in the trash.
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Crystal Cruise lines announced the 100-percent elimination of plastic straws across its entire fleet as the company figured out how to use less plastic. Marriott International announced it would completely eliminate plastic straws and stirrers from its properties worldwide. The company estimated it uses about 1 billion straws and 250 million stirrers per year across more than 65,000 locations. American Airlines and Starbucks also announced they are phasing out their plastic straws to show us all how to use less plastic.
Cities are getting in on it. The city of San Francisco was the first to eliminate the use of plastic bags in 2007. In 2016, California banned plastic bags statewide. What’s all the fuss? It takes 1,000 years for a plastic bag to decompose. Plastic bottles take 450 years to completely break down.
What’s all the fuss? It takes 1,000 years for a plastic bag to decompose. Plastic bottles take 450 years to completely break down.
While the movement is still growing in the U.S., with pending and passed legislation in New York, Hawaii and California, Oregon, Washington and Florida, it’s game on around the globe: Vancouver banned straws, Scotland plans to be rid of single use plastics starting this year, and Taiwan is banning single-use plastic items, including straws, cups and shopping bags by 2030. In the U.K. Queen Elizabeth II banned plastic straws and bottles from all royal estates.
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The team of ICONICLIFE.COM is committed to finding ways to use less plastic in our daily lives. We can do it.
Join us by making the decision today to eliminate just one single-use plastic from your life for good. One becomes two, and two becomes four, and that’s how we make a difference. Every single person can make an impact in reducing the consumption of single-use plastics.
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We’re giving you a front-row seat each month to see the progress and what it takes to develop a net-zero home. Stay tuned each month for content, social media coverage, videos, podcasts and special events all tied to sustainability as we bring this home to life.
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