Plastic Free July: Small Actions = Big Impact

Category: Sustainability

Author: Lydia

July 02, 2020

Plastic Free July has quickly arrived, and here at Tree Tribe, it has us doing a deep dive into ways we can do better for the planet.

But first, what exactly is Plastic Free July? Plastic Free July is a movement born out of a global call for each of us to be part of the solution to plastic pollution and see a world without its damaging effects.

The Problem

Our plastic, primarily single-use plastics (think your coffee cup lid from this morning!), doesn't just disappear when you throw it away. Instead, it makes way to our oceans and landfills, polluting the air, natural habitats, and poisoning wildlife. Take a look at these fast facts on just how much of an impact plastic has on our world:

  • It is estimated that about 18 billion pounds of plastic finds its way into our oceans every year (imagine a truckload entering the ocean every minute, yikes!).
  • 40% of all plastic that is produced is used only once and then thrown away.
  • Less than 1/5th of all plastic that is used globally is recycled; the remainder is burned or ends up in landfills.
  • It's estimated that five trillion pieces of plastic are in our oceans - this is enough plastic to circle the Earth more than 40 times!
  • Every minute, nearly one million plastic bottles are sold. In 2015, Americans used more than 300 bottles per person.

But what does this impact look like?

  • There have been more than 700 documented marine species affected by ocean plastic pollution.
  • More than half of dolphins and whales have ingested plastic.
  • Almost 9 in 10 seabirds and 1 in 3 sea turtles have ingested plastic.
  • 87% of birds in just the Canadian Artic alone have ingested plastic.
  • Low-income communities face the most health risk from toxins and waste of plastic manufacturing and disposal.

plastic bottles in water

Okay, we know these statistics are a little scary. It is clear that single-use plastic severely damages our health and that of living creatures around us and our beautiful world. The good news is, there's something you can do about it!

What can I do?

You may have read those statistics and thought, "how can I actually make a dent in this problem?". Enter: Plastic Free July!

While we may not solve the plastic solution overnight, our small, seemingly simple decisions add up to massive impact! The key here? Starting small with the month of July!

Switch to a reusable bottle

Ditch the purchasing of plastic bottles and pick up a reusable one to use for everything from your morning coffee to the water for your afternoon yoga class.

We're going to suggest our best-selling eco-bottles (all are 20% off this for July!) as it comes with a lifetime warranty and keeps your drinks cold all day - yes, all day - long.

tree tribe stainless steel water bottle sizes

Bring your own shopping bags

While some grocery stores are doing this on their own, many are not. Avoid an influx of plastic use by bringing your own shopping bags to the store. They often hold a lot more, are easy to clean...and they're usually a whole lot cuter. We love this roundup from Good Housekeeping on the best of the best!

reusable shopping bags for plastic free living

Skip the straws

Most of us probably instinctively reach for a straw at a restaurant, but you don't have to! Bringing your own straw is an easy way to reduce your plastic consumption, save the turtles, and protect the planet.

P.S. Tree Tribe is launching our line of reusable straws this summer!

Join our email list (at the bottom of this page) to stay in the know!

reusable straws

Educate yourself

Now more than ever, companies are responding to consumer demands of environmentally friendly practices. Do your research and commit to supporting companies that are going above and beyond - such as ClifBar and Method.

Where you spend your hard-earned money speaks volumes to what we allow as an acceptable practice.

While the list could go on, there are three easy ways to start making your decisions part of the solution rather than the problem. We hope you join in on Plastic Free July and spend this month being as plastic-free as you can be.

A better world for us all is possible, and together, we can make a difference with small collective action. As Margaret Mead once said, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."

Learn more about Plastic Free July and commit to the challenge here!

Sources:
www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2018/05/plastics-facts-infographics-ocean-pollution
www.greenpeace.org/usa/key-facts-about-plastic-pollution

Author: Lydia

Brand Development Manager, Product Designer

Lydia has a deep passion for traveling and exploring the world. When she’s not working on her next project or adventuring, you can find her reading, working out, and spending time with her inner circle.

Favorite nature spot: Tela, Honduras



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