March 4, 2012

Plastic Challenge: Colleen, Week 1



Suggestions on dealing with dog waste.

Location:Santa Cruz, California, United States

Name: Colleen

Week: 1

Personal Info:

Retired, single woman, shops at both farmers markets and local grocery stores. One dog that gets walked and picked up after daily. Cooks at home most days.

Colleen’s personal blog:

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
none as it was week 1

Total items collected: 39

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable
Odwalla OJ container – 1

Items: Nonrecyclable
dog poo bag 8
berry basket 2
bacon wrapper 1
produce bag 2
plastic meat wrap 3
garbage bag 2
kleenex box window 2
spice jar lid 1
pen 1
cheese wrapper 2
piece of saran wrap 3
plastic around lid of salad dressing bottle 1
remote storage disk drive bag 1
wrappper on tea bag box 1
cardboard milk carton 1
contact lens fluid bottle 1
yogurt tub 2
torn newspaper bag 1
frozen pizza wrapper 1
chapstick tube 1
toothbrush 1

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
Probably at least half very easily – the rest with a little more effort.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
produce bags would be very easy to dispense with and then I could just use my newspaper bags for dog waste – unless I come up with a better solution for that

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
tooth brush
contact lens fluid

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Just being aware is imperative

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
produce bags at the market

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
This week was quite enlightening!

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2 Comments on "Plastic Challenge: Colleen, Week 1"

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Hi Colleen. Welcome to the challenge! I have some suggestions for you.

St. Benoit yogurt is made in Northern California and comes in returnable glass mason jars or ceramic carafes. You pay a deposit and get it back at the store when you return the container. This link will show you locations in your area. Click on “Central Coast.”

I have lots of other suggestions, but I think you have already figured out some things to do in the following weeks, and I’m looking forward to seeing your next posts. Cheers!

I am fortunate to have a septic system and deposit dog waste directly into it — except when we are out walking, then I have the same problem as everyone else unless I carry it all the way back home and try to turn the bag inside out — yuck!
Yogurt containers that I buy are #5, which is recyclable here. Not there?