August 13, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Camp SEA Lab- Girls Love Science Too, Week 1

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Any suggestions for a program to reduce their waste but still keep things sanitary and up to health codes?

Location:, California, United States

Name: Camp SEA Lab- Girls Love Science Too

Week: 1

Personal Info:

We are a group of teenage girls who decided to see how much plastic we used in one week of camp. Our camp theme this week is all about marine debris (of which plastic is very prominent) and we were making educational videos about marine debris as part of the week. We did not choose to have all of our sandwiches and food individually packaged, but that is how the food comes when we are at camp. Some packaging came from our own lunches from the first day and many of us have our own water bottles. We also probably had a bit more plastic trash that didn’t make the collection owing to a super motivated cleaning crew for the building and general confusion as to why we were collecting our trash.

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

Some plastic utensils were not needed. Many had water bottles.

Total items collected: 350

Total weight: ?

Items: Recyclable
water bottles, possible the ranch containers, to-go salad containers

Items: Nonrecyclable
Taterware?, chip and pretzel bags, clingwrap (SO much clingwrap), fruit snack wrappers, granola bar wrappers, lunchable boxes, plastic bags

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
larger chip bags which are then portioned out, water bottles (reusable), plastic bags (reusable bags)… we also stared brainstorming things that we use in our outside of camp lives: soda/drink bottles (can buy aluminium or glass), utensils (byo)

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
some girls said candy or different types of chips

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
medicine bottles (though many said their pharmacies will refill their own bottles)

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Might need to plan ahead more as far as packing a lunch and going to different stores to buy things in less packaging.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
many said water bottles/drink bottles, sandwich bags

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
We all decided that this is a big task but we can each focus one thing at a time.

1 comments
Eve Stavros
Eve Stavros

I wish I could offer some help with your question; I just really wanted to commend you for your efforts and encourage you.  Keep up the good work and good luck finding a solution to the food packaging problem for camp.  You young ladies are setting such a great example for others!!!