June 28, 2011

Plastic Challenge: Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett, Week 18

Plastic-free chapstick with SPF?

Location:Berkeley, California, United States

Name: Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett

Week: 18

Personal Info:

two grad students, two cats

Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett’s personal blog: http://becca.posterous.com/

Total items: 10

Total weight: 3.78 ounces

Items: Recyclable
Bottle of pet cleaner carpet spray (old)

Items: Nonrecyclable
– 3 envelope windows
– two magazine wrappers
– bag of Hawaiian ground kava
– chocolate bar wrapper

– piece of a cell phone
– tampon wrapper

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Pet carpet cleaner: One of our cats sometimes leaves unwanted gifts for us outside of the litter box. The carpet cleaner is not something we are willing to go without, but this particular brand does not even work very well. We switched to a large bottle (#2 plastic) of all natural, enzyme-based cleaner that comes in concentrate. We found this to be a great less plastic alternative, but I am definitely open to suggestions if someone has a good way of cleaning up pet stains.

plastic-wrapped tampons: I’ve switched to the natural cotton brand with paper wrapping. This one was still in my bathroom.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
Magazine wrappers: They only appear on the magazines when its raining. One of us is willing to do without (or purchase individual magazine from stores), but one of us is not.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
Kava: Ok, this is not an essential item. Gordon brought it back from a recent field trip to Hawaii.

Piece of plastic from my cell phone: Thankfully, my cell phone still works!! But, it makes me nervous that my phone will bite the dust soon.

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?
Kava (it tastes like soil anyway)

Plastic-wrapped chocolate

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
Envelope windows make me angry!

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