How to reduce plastic pollution
At Celtic & Co, we have taken up the challenge of reducing plastic waste as much as possible in our business. We are aiming to eliminate plastic in our packaging. Where possible, we have switched to wrapping our clothing in tissue paper and mainly use cardboard boxes to ship products. We have also reduced the amount of tape we use, and we have replaced plastic pens with wooden pencils.
While the plastic problem also needs to be tackled on a larger scale, there are small changes that everyone can make that will help reduce the amount of plastic that ends up polluting our natural environments.
Don't buy clothing made from synthetic fibres
Clothing made of synthetic fibres, such as polyester, are plastic based. When they are washed, it releases thousands of tiny microplastics into the water system. Even in landfill, this type of clothing will break down over time into microplastics, which is then found in the soil and can then also find its way into our waterways. Buying clothes made of sustainable natural materials, such as cotton, linen and wool, can help to reduce the amount of microplastic and plastic waste that finds its way into our natural environment.
Use a reusable water bottle
Taking a reusable water bottle with you while out and about means you won’t be tempted to buy water in a single-use plastic bottle. According to Surfers Against Sewerage (SAS), over 150 plastic bottles litter each mile of the UK's beaches.
Use a reusable coffee cup
Most disposable coffee cups and their safety tops are not recyclable. A report released by the Environmental Audit Committee in 2018 found that the UK uses 2.5 billion disposable coffee cups a year, that's 7 million a day. Using a reusable coffee cup not only reduces your plastic footprint but it can save you money too, as many coffee shops offer a small discount if you use your own reusable coffee cup.
Always take your rubbish with you
After a sunny day, especially during the school holidays or over a bank holiday, Cornwall's beaches are often littered with, well, litter. According to a report by The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) in 2015, beaches in Cornwall have more than twice as much rubbish as the UK average. While not all this is down to people leaving their litter, as some of it is being washed up, beachgoers leaving their rubbish only adds to the problem. If you are going to the beach, make sure you take your rubbish with you when you leave.
Buy pre-loved stuff
Buying products that you want or need second-hand helps to keep them in circulation and reduces what goes into landfill. Websites and apps such as Pre-loved, Facebook marketplace, Freecycle and Shpock are a great place to find such things as toys, furniture, clothes, tools and many other items that are no longer wanted or needed by their current owner but are still in good condition.
Plastic pollution is an issue for everyone. According to SAS, plastic pollution can be found on every beach in the UK. For more information on what we are doing to tackle plastic pollution, visit our blog.