February 27, 2013

Plastic Challenge: Aric Bickel, Week 1

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I would be interested to know if anyone had information on plastic free or reusable dog pick-up bags.

Location:Santa Cruz, California, United States

Name: Aric Bickel

Week: 1

Personal Info:

male, living with domestic partner, work some at home and some away from home.

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)

Yogurt container as Tupperware. tortilla bag as dog pick-up bag. bagel bag as dog pick-up bag.

Total items collected: 17

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
grape juice container, orange juice container, apple sauce container, butter container, almond container, strawberry container, salsa to-go containers (2).

Items: Nonrecyclable
Pretzel bag, cracker wrapper, fake meat plastic wrappers (2), packaging around butter container, chip bag insert, tortilla bag, bagel bag.

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
the bagel bag, apple sauce container (could by the one in the jar), he strawberry container, and the salsa containers.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
the chip and pretzel bags and the salsa.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
the juice containers. particularly the grape juice, it is impossible to find a glass grape juice bottle.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Buying less snacks, maybe eating less dairy as a lot of it tends to come packaged heavily.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
The take away salsa containers.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?

6 comments
jonnie
jonnie

Once you all have eliminated ALL possible waste, as a group you might want to consider building a Peace on Earth Bench [POEM] with bottle bricks...:

http://www.earthbench.org

Also consider creating Terracycle Brigades for items you're having trouble eliminating:

http://www.terracycle.com

Plastic-Free Ericka Moderator
Plastic-Free Ericka Moderator

Eve Stavros   Thanks for sharing this adorable video, the little girl is too cute! I try and tell my friends how much money they can save by forgoing plastic trash bags. As this video shows, they clearly aren't needed. For my house since we have a compost bin, I can get away with not using any type of garbage liner. I just simply take my trash can out to the large collection bin and dump it into there. I haven't had to really clean out my kitchen garbage can since we compost all food scraps so it doesn't get yucky or smelly.

NutItOut
NutItOut

We just take newspaper and use it like a giant piece of toilet paper. Wrap it up to dispose of or compost it. My mum will often take along a pair of rubber kitchen gloves in her dog bag (It's washable cotton canvas and carries all those doggy things like water, newsprint, toys, lead etc)

Melody
Melody

We sometimes get grape juice in glass.  Try at Staff of Life or New Leaf Market.

Eve Stavros
Eve Stavros

Aric,  I think reusable dog "business" pickup bags would be sort of yucky to clean.  I have two suggestions, both of which I use for cat litter disposal, and cheaper than biodegradable (which I'm still suspicious of):

1. "Reclaim" used plastic bags from the recycle bins at your grocery store, or set up a collection point yourself at work (I did this when I noticed people would bring their lunch in a plastic bag, then toss the bag in the trash, like every day!). Newspaper bags, frozen veggie bags, cereal box liners.  I snag them from my less green friends. At least you'll be taking ones that have been used.

2. Make yourself some newspaper bags - I do this for my small trashcan.  Because of how it's folded, it would give you flaps which would protect your hand under when scooping.  You could make it out of half-sheet newspaper for smaller size.  Here's a two-minute video that shows a 9-year-old girl making one, it's that easy!