September 4, 2013

Plastic Challenge: EcoM8s, Week 1

IMG_3668

Freezing of meat without plastic

Location:, Connecticut, United States

Name: EcoM8s

Week: 1

Personal Info:

We are an eco-conscious family of 3 . Our home is heated/cooled by a geothermal ground loop/furnace and radiant floors. We generate all (and usually a little extra) of our electricity usage (which includes heat) with solar panels (we were lucky enough to get them under a lease program in our state 3 years ago).

We have a vegetable garden that supplies us with mostly greens during the summer months and we purchase other local organic produce from the market. We use cloth bags at the grocery store and just started using cloth bags (a huge savings in the amount of plastic we were using) for bulk items and bringing our own containers for liquid bulk items like body soap, dish soap, maple syrup, and olive oil.

So, our goal is to dramatically reduce our plastic usage. We have been surprised to find out how many products are have plastic embedded in them.

EcoM8s’s personal blog: http://ecom8s.blogspot.com/

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
plastic baggies, plastic cereal box liners, feminine pad covers, air filled plastic packaging material, plastic bubble packaging, plastic packaging from school supplies, meat wrappers, tea bag wrappers, facial wash bottle, men’s after shave bottle, ice cream container (paper lined with plastic), maple syrup container, McDonald’s cup and straw, shower gel bottle, milk cap (from glass milk bottle), toothpaste container, 2 chip bags, toothbrush, cheese wrapper, gift card, candy wrappers, granola bar wrappers, to go containers, plastic forks (cleaning out plastic from house)

Total items collected: 78

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
plastic baggies, plastic cereal box liners, feminine pad covers, air filled plastic packaging material, plastic bubble packaging, facial wash bottle, men’s after shave bottle, , maple syrup container, McDonald’s cup and straw, shower gel bottle, milk cap (from glass milk bottle), toothpaste container,

Items: Nonrecyclable
plastic packaging from school supplies, meat wrappers, tea bag wrappers, ice cream container (paper lined with plastic), 2 chip bags, toothbrush, cheese wrapper, gift card, candy wrappers, granola bar wrappers, to go containers, plastic forks (cleaning out plastic from house)

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
By buying bulk and using my own containers I can replace the cereal box liners, tea bag wrappers, maple syrup, shower gel, toothbrushes (recently bought bamboo).

Baggies can be replaced with stainless steel and/or glass containers, wax paper bags.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
I can’t seem to find organic cheeses in a deli; all are wrapped in plastic or in plastic containers. Organic meats are also difficult to find not wrapped in plastic.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
baggies

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?