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We’re Going Plastic-Free in July – Are You?

We're going plastic-free in July, are you?
Written by Jennifer Nini

For those of you who read my recent post ‘Could You Live Plastic-Free?‘ you will know that I am seriously considering going plastic-free in 2016. I am often undertaking environmental challenges to test my eco values. I figure; if I can’t implement changes in my own life, how can I expect anyone else to? We have to be the change we wish to see in the world, right?

When I discussed this with my fiance Ben (who wasn’t keen to do it for the sheer volume of work involved) he was able to convince me that the idea was insane and there was no real reason to attempt it as we already live pretty sustainably: growing our own food, reducing our consumption and living off-the-grid.

But then last week on Facebook, my friend Megan tagged me in on the Plastic-Free July challenge and I thought it was the perfect time to broach the subject with Ben again. A 31 day challenge? Surely this would be an easy-sell.

In fact, it was easier than easy. I even had the “I’ll do all the shopping if you want” card up my sleeve if I needed to use it. But I didn’t have to.

Ben was all in.

THE CHALLENGE

Just like October’s ‘Buy Nothing New’ campaign raises awareness of mindless consumption and it’s impact on the environment, The Plastic-Free July campaign raises awareness of how single-use disposable plastic dominates our lives and why this is bad for the planet.

The point of this challenge is to become more conscious of our plastic consumption, facilitate discussions and put the idea into practice. By signing up, you are opting to do something about our plastic problem.

So… why not be an awesome human being and sign up to the challenge and join us (and many other thousands of people in 70 countries across the world)?

WHY NOT SIGN UP FOR PLASTIC-FREE JULY?

COMMON OBJECTIONS

Worried that you can’t commit to refusing ALL single-use plastics?

You can opt in for the challenge of refusing just the top four: plastic bags, water bottles, takeaway coffee cups and straws.

Worried that you can’t commit to the entire month of July?

You have the option of signing up for a day or a week.

Worried that it’s too late to sign up because it’s July 2? 

No stress. You can start today. Every day you refuse disposable plastics is a win for Mother Nature. If you need more reasons to start, why not read this article I wrote about how we’re destroying the planet. 

For more information about the Plastic-Free July challenge head to the website: http://www.plasticfreejuly.org

Now your turn: Have you already joined? How are you finding the challenge? For those of you who haven’t signed up –  what’s stopping you? Please feel free to leave a comment below.

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About the author

Jennifer Nini

Jennifer Nini is a writer, activist and the founding editor of Eco Warrior Princess. In 2010, after studying Fashion Business, she began this blog to explore her interests in fashion, politics, social justice and sustainability. Jennifer is also the founder of The Social Copywriter, a digital agency harnessing the power of copywriting and content marketing to help mindful businesses reach more people. When she's not perfecting a sentence or coaching business clients, you will find her at her certified organic farm reconnecting with nature.

14 Comments

  • I thought it would be alot easier than it is. Plastic is everywhere, I had to buy frozen blueberries and it used to be in boxes but they have changed to plastic bags. So I started to think how I could re-use the plastic bag. It is one of those re-sealable ones with the snap lock. So I guess plastic free July has got me thinking about what I can do with what would normally be single use plastic.

    • I agree Antoinette! Thought it would be easier given but only 4 days in and it has been an eye-opening experience already. Our lives are dominated by the stuff. Look out for more updates from me and would love to keep in touch to hear how you’re travelling with it 🙂

  • I’m intrigued to see your thoughts and stories during your journey on this challenge. I think I’ll try the top four of plastic bags, coffee cups and straws, and plastic bottles. I’ll be traveling next week, but it might be an interesting challenge to see what I can do while on the road.

    • It’s definitely an eye-opening experience even for me! Look forward to your updates on the road, I think that travel adds an element of difficulty so it’ll be interesting to see how you go 🙂

      • I’m excited to share my thoughts and experience on this, and already I’m finding it difficult to avoid plastic while traveling because I already have so much of it for storage. I’m already thinking it would make a great blog post to reflect on how dependent we are on plastic when traveling and what can possibly be done on it. Even if I’m not able to make everyday plastic-free all the time, I think it’s good to share problems I encounter and what I learned from them. I’ll be intrigued to hear your journey too!

        • Absolutely! Please do share how you navigate the plastic problem on your travels- I’m sure I’m not the only one who’d love to hear about it!

  • I’ve failed already! I went out Saturday night and forgot to ask for no straws in my drinks. I didn’t even think about it until the next day! Oops! Feeling a little guilty.
    To be honest, I probably won’t go 100% plastic free but I’ve significantly reduced the amount of plastic I use. I’m really aware of it these days.
    I’m staying in Bali next month and my main concern is bottled water. I’ve sent an email to the villa I’m staying at to find out if they have filtered water so I can bring a reusable water bottle. Otherwise I have been doing some research on bottles with a filter that get rid of 98% of bacteria and disease. I’m still a little scared using them though – I don’t want to get Bali belly!

    • Ahhh it’s difficult isn’t it? I wouldn’t be too upset, you’re not the only one. So many people are realising the same thing! Plastic is so ingrained in our lives that we don’t even think twice. Let us know how you go with your Bali travels as I think that your experiences and insight will help others. On another note, I had my own ‘failure’ when I went to our local grocer and had to purchase zucchini. All of the zucchini- despite being chemical-free and locally grown- were all popped into plastic bags and I had to ask the sales assistant to take it out of the plastic bags so I can purchase them without but when I left the shop realised that I should have specified for them to re-use those bags! Ahhh oh well, hope they did. Anyway enjoy your travels and look forward to hearing about it. Are you going to write about it?? Please do! 🙂

      • I heard back from the villa. They get 19L water tanks delivered to the villa with a dispenser in the kitchen, so I will be able take my Klean Kanteen to refill. I’m very happy about that.
        I will definitely do a post or two about Bali. There seems to be

        • Fantastic news…! Great to know this as I boycotted Nestle and their bottled water is sold all over Asia so when I head over to the region again, I will definitely follow your footsteps. ps given the comment is split in two (accidentally) I will also split mine in two (purposefully lol!)

  • Oops! I posted the comment before I finished.

    ….There seesm to be a bit of an eco-tourism scene in Bali so I’ve been doing a bit research on that. I’m unsure what I’m going to do on the plane – if I bring my own food or not to avoid rubbish going to landfill. I’m having a look at the airlines policy on sustainability and waste management.

    • Yes my future sister-in-laws (I’m not married yet) were in love with eco tourism spots in Ubud when they were there last year. Looking forward to seeing where your green travels takes you. As for the plane food, hadn’t actually thought about it until you mentioned it as I often forgo food for interstate travel and for some reason the last few trips overseas we’ve been flying with Air Asia so mandatory stops in Malaysia means being able to sit down and eat there rather than eating plane food. Let me know how you go with the airlines policy on bringing your own food. That’s what I’d be opting for.

  • Congrats on making it half way to Plastic Free July!
    We really enjoy seeing and following your passion and love for sustainability.

    We’re launching a simple t-shirt as our way of reducing plastics, co2 and water in the apparel industry. The waste is huge in the industry and surprising to know that it takes more than 650 gallons of water alone to produce One t-shirt.

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/iiko/iiko-saves-more-than-640-gallons-of-water-for-each

    Keep up the great work!

    • Thanks Hethe for the support! Yes it’s shocking, water is such a precious commodity (I should know, we are still technically in drought). I’ll have to check out your kickstarter campaign, sounds interesting 🙂

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