Environmental issues are now blowing up your social media page. If you have not seen Greta Thunberg, then you, my friend, must be living underneath a rock. She wants to make a change to our planet because if we could live just a little longer, that would be great. Now, for some people, they believe that no matter what they do the planet will die anyway, but you should at least try. So, I have compiled a list of helpful things to do to minimize the use of single use plastics.
1. Get rid of plastic straws.
Now, I know many of you are thinking; "Well, that will not do much," but it does because every little bit does. 182.5 billion straws are used every year; that is nearly 73,000 metric tons of plastic every year. All restaurants are starting to move towards fewer straws, which is a good thing. However, there is always that one person who needs to drink through a straw. Then you can buy a reusable, collapsible straw on Amazon and now any home store sells the metal ones, which you can reuse. Just by doing this simple thing, we can decrease the amount of plastic found in our oceans and in the dead whales. This is not much of a life changing choice, but you will feel better knowing that the oceans animals are much happier.
2. Don't shop using a plastic bag.
Every year nearly 500 billion to one trillion plastic bags are used. That is approximately one million bags being used per minute. It is good that now most grocery stores are moving towards getting rid of bags or charging people for a bag. Still plastic bags are a huge cause to why our planet is dying. I understand that you might forget your reusable grocery bag, but still if you insist on buying a dollar bag to carry your stuff then at least you that plastic bag for your garbage. You don't need to buy specific bags for garbage. That is possibly the biggest waste of money anyone can spend. $2.97 is how much you spend on buying those, assuming you go through a box a month that is $35.64, but some households probably go through two of those boxes filled with garbage bags, which it all adds up. You could be saving $35.64 a year just by not buying garbage bags. For some people that is no big deal because it is only $35, but that money could be used for something better.
3. Take out containers.
This is the most frustrating part of the whole environmentally friendly thing. So many of us order take out when we are feeling lazy, or some people just do not know how to cook, so they order in. First of all, that is extremely unhealthy for someone to do that and yes, I am guilty of committing this crime myself. The amount of plastic and packaging that goes into ordering food in is stupid amounts. 14 million tons of it is used. Restaurants should start making cardboard containers or start asking consumers to bring their own containers. We use Styrofoam nearly every day, and the fact that no one has done anything about it is astounding to me. When I move out I will be making my own dinner with ingredients that I can trust. I am rarely going to be eating out. Quote me on that. You save so much money by not eating out. $3,008 can be saved by not eating out for a year—that's almost the same amount as rent. You can save the planet and your money.
4. Plastic bottles are so wasteful.
Buy a water bottle and fill that up, friend! Sure, you might have forgotten your water bottle at home and you needed to buy one at school, but then you just fill that up until the water bottle looks pretty used. 38 billion water bottles are discarded to the dump every year. If you break that down, that is 1,500 bottles every day and every second that are being used and dumped. That is ridiculous; you can decrease that number significantly by people just not buying what they need in plastic. You can buy a soda stream if you really want that coke or ginger ale. You would be saving your weight by putting in how much syrup you want, and you reuse the bottle that comes with it. It is so easy to save the planet.
That is a list of four simple ways to start saving the planet and your money. People are stressed out about money more than the planet, but you know what? Why not kill two birds with one stone? we can make a change without adding the stress into our lives as a matter of fact it will relieve that stress. That's one less thing to worry about.