Trash. It’s literally everywhere from the backseat of our vehicles to alongside the road. Let’s face it, we have a major issue with obtaining trash. How many things do you buy a day that you throw away? Actually think about this for a minute and go through the items you purchased today or on your last trip to town. Did you get a drink at the gas station? How about that quick stop into the grocery store to get a gallon of milk? I bet you got a plastic bag to put your grocery items in as well.
Every single day companies are producing items that make it easy for us, the consumer, to go about our daily lives in the most convenient way possible. Everything is made to be disposable and a quick fix for the busy world we live in. The easier it is for us to use and throw away, the better. Check out these statistics from the U.S. National Park Service of Sarasota, Fl. on how long it takes items to decompose. ——->Trash Facts It’s scary when you think about it. All of our trash sitting in the ground and above ground taking thousands and even millions of years to decompose. What about the generations to come? Ae they going to be dealing with our trash? My guess is, probably so.
After doing research on how I can lessen my impact on our planet, I wanted to share what I have been implementing into my daily life that not only is better for our environment, but for my wallet as well. I am sharing with you what I have learned over the years that has worked for me. You have no obligation to do the same, but I feel it’s important for you to at least understand the impact you are making if you choose to lead a life that is only convenient for yourself. Most trash comes from our laziness of not wanting to do dishes or have to worry about doing more laundry. If you put that laziness aside you will create a happier planet and save money all at the same time.
GET A REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE, PREFERABLY GLASS. I cringe when I see people at the supermarket picking up a huge case of bottled water. I understand the convenience, I really do, but it takes roughly 450 years for a plastic bottle to decompose. Is that really worth it? I think not. The best option for this dilemma is to get a water filtration system in your home or a Brita water pitcher so you can keep refilling your bottle. I choose glass over plastic because you are eliminating your intake of BPA’s and you also get a more crisp clean tasting drink every time with glass. My favorite glass water bottle is by the brand ello. If you are an Amazon fan like me, you can get one here https://www.amazon.com/Ello-Syndicate-BPA-Free-Bottle-20-Ounce/dp/B0124TJ79O
START USING REUSABLE NAPKINS. It’s weird at first because you feel all fancy at home using a reusable napkin, but it’s something you get used to. I recommend getting a pack of fifteen or twenty napkins so you don’t have to worry about doing laundry just so you have napkins for dinner tonight. Trust me on this one, you save money on your grocery bill every week and you prevent napkins from getting in the landfill, which take up to 4 weeks to decompose.
STOP USING K-CUPS. I know , I know. They are super convenient. Put your cup in, take it out, throw it in the trash. But have you ever thought about how your k-cup isn’t recyclable? You have to specifically buy Keurig’s brand of recyclable k-cups, which are more expensive by the way, in order to recycle your cup. Get a reusable coffee filter, buy your own farmers market coffee and enjoy a much more fresh, eco-friendly cup of coffee. You can buy reusable coffee filters usually at any retail shop, just make sure it will fit your coffee maker.
STOP USING DISPOSABLE PLATES, BOWLS, AND SILVERWARE. Sorry to burst your bubble, but foamed disposable anything takes about 50 years to decompose. So if I use a foam cup today with my favorite beer in it at the age of 28, it will decompose when I’m 78 yeas old. Just don’t be lazy and do dishes. Period.
START USING REUSABLE GROCERY BAGS. Buying reusable grocery bags has been all the rage these past couple years, but yet I see very few people using them. It takes 10-20 years for a plastic bag to decompose. Almost every supermarket and store has reusable bags right by the isles for as little as 99 cents per bag. Same for produce bags, you know those little plastic bags you put your herbs, peppers, and other vegetables and fruits in? You can buy reusable produce bags here https://www.amazon.com/flip-tumble-Reusable-Produce-Bags/dp/B002UXQ7QQ
These five changes in my life have helped me help the planet in more ways than one and is teaching me that life isn’t always about convenience. Sure, it’s nice sometimes but there are always consequences when it comes to our trash for not only our future generations, but for our wildlife as well.