June 14, 2009

Kale for Sale – One Week of Plastic


I posted my week of saving plastic nearly a month ago before the smart format from Beth. Here it is again, but this time more succinct and on the official show us your plastic blog!

1) Week

# 1 (Second week in May)

2) Name:

Katrina @ kaleforsale.blogspot.com

3) List of Recyclable items (write out in list form and include the recycling # at the bottom and how it gets recycled in your community, as far as you know.)

None (But I realize I never look at the numbers on the bottom and I have no idea what numbers our community recycles!)

4) List of Non-Recyclable items

1 cookie tray
1 big bag from Dr. Earth’s soil
1 cellophane bag from Rancho Gordo beans
1 plastic lined Cliff Bar wrapper
1 piece of saran wrap around local cheese
1 sponge wrapper
1 ziploc baggie from almonds
1 ziploc baggie from walnuts
1 newspaper bag
1 knife
1 straw
2 forks
2 plastic rinds from jars of yogurt
2 packages for boat supplies
3 lids from coffee to go
10 envelopes with plastic windows

5) Total number of items


6) Total weight of plastic stash


7) Analysis. Answer the following questions as best as you can.
What items could I easily replace with plastic-free or less plastic alternatives?

I can buy almonds and walnuts in bulk using cotton bags.
Carry utensils in our cars and in my purse.
Think ahead to request no straw.
Carry a cup more often.
Request e-statements instead of mailed paper statements.

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

Having the Sunday paper delivered with it’s accompanying plastic bag.

How many of these items are from “convenience” foods that could be made from scratch with less packaging but might take more time to prepare?

The coffee to go lids for sure.
The snacks of cookies and the Cliff Bar.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?

My favorites kind of sponges with the one side that is a scrubby don’t seem to be sold without a cellophane wrapper. But I have since found them wrapped several to a package instead of individually.

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

Continuing to take small steps and being excited about finding and creating workable alternatives.

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

I’m willing to give up having the Sunday paper delivered.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?

We used more plastic than I thought we did but so much less than a year ago that I celebrated our progress. And my other realization was sailing generates a lot of plastic. Nearly everything purchased for the boat is packaged in it as are the snacks necessary for a long day of single handed racing.

8) Personal description

We are a married full time working couple. I commute two hours a day on transit, the cute guy works local. I source 90% to 95% of our food from the year round farmers’ markets in the bay area. The cute guys sails, I cook, garden in pots and read the paper.

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