May 29, 2016

Plastic Challenge: Michelle, Week 1

I discovered that I tend to use A LOT of plastic bags as container for all my food and other stuff. I want to find better solutions for this. I have a very small kitchen and therefore don’t really have the space for a lot of food containers.

I also want to find a better solution for all the plastic bags I use for all my trash every day. I know that there is a post about this on this blog, but since i live with two other roommates I would like to find a solution that they can live with as well.

Location:  Aarhus C, Aarhus, Denmark

Name: Michelle

Week: 1

Personal Info:

I am an almost 20 year old woman from Aarhus, Denmark. I currently study to become a social worker and have smaller jobs on the side. I live with two other roommates in central Aarhus, with whom I share one bathroom and a very small kitchen.

List of plastic items REFUSED this week. (Yay!)
I usually use one plastic bag every day for my lunch meals at school. i avoided that this week – and hopefully every week from now and forward – by buying myself a small lunch box made out of metal.

Total items collected: 15

Total weight:

Items: Recyclable

Items: Nonrecyclable
I don’t believe any of the items I have collected this first week would have been recycled. Normally they would just have been put in a plastic bag with all the other trash and with have put in the trash can. I am not sure what they do with that waste. Maybe burn it? I am not sure.

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
I could easily find reusable containers for all my food and avoid all the plastic bags. That one is easy.

A lot of my plastic trash also consisted of the plastic that comes with food, when you buy it in the grocery store. I think I can avoid this issue by going to a more local food store, where they f.x. doesn’t have their fruit wrapped up in plastic.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
I did have a plastic bottle this week, which is a complete waste of not only plastic but also money. Normally I wouldn’t have bought it, but I had forgotten my water bottle at home and it was hot. That is not something I will buy again. Other than that I don’t feel that I have been irresponsible about what I have bought/thrown out this week. All of it is stuff that I need.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
Cheese. I love cheese, but they do have plastic wrapped all around them – at least the cheese that I like and buy. I could try to look for alternative cheeses that doesn’t have plastic around them and I would like to eat. But I just don’t find it that likely unfortunately.

Sanitary pads. I don’t like tampons and all the other stuff that you can use, while you are on your period. And I just don’t see a way to get around all the plastic that comes with sanitary pads.

Kleenex. I have had a cold and have sneezing like crazy. A ton of Kleenex has been necessary and I don’t know how to get around this one. You can buy Kleenex in a paper box, but since I am on the go a lot o my time, I don’t really know how practical that would be.

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?
Go to the local food store and buy my groceries. As I said before they don’t use so much plastic those places, and in the progress I would actually help out some locals. Win-win.

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?
Muesli bars. A couple of weeks ago I bought a lot of muesli bars and each one of them has plastic wrapped around. I will definitely try to avoid those. And once they are eating I won’t buy them again.

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?

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