Put Less Plastic Packaging on my Hershey’s Syrup Please

Hershey's please use biodegradable string to couple your syrup bottles for bulk purchase

Hershey's please use biodegradable string to couple your syrup bottles for bulk purchase

We use #PlasticStuff so much in our homes and lives, it’s hard to imagine life before it was invented 110 years ago! Since then, some 5 billion tons of plastic has been produced.  And it’s all still here, somewhere on land or in the water, because it does not decompose for centuries, if at all.

So much plastic has accumulated in rivers, lakes, and oceans that it has infiltrated the food chain for animals and humans, with terrible results. Now 93% of Americans test positive for BPA, the plastic chemical, in their blood streams. This is very bad for our health, because it harms our endocrine and immune functions. When sea life, birds or other animals mistake plastic for food, and eat it, it kills them.

Pay attention to the amount of plastic you use daily. If you avoid using, buying, accepting anything plastic, even just one day a week, you can cut your plastic consumption by 14%, instantly and easily! Try it! Consider joining our Facebook group,  #PlasticFreeFridays, and share your experiences and ideas!

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Really Bad Elf Perpetuates Plastic Pollution

This naughty elf is Unsustainable Scott!, and he perpetuates plastic pollution profusion!

What a gift it would be if this little elf would use a reusable coffee filter with loose ground coffee in his Keurig! Not only could he add the used coffee grounds to his compost pile, or mix it into soil around his evergreens or roses, but he could also save himself money by buying ground coffee or beans in bulk, AND prevent more plastic waste at the same time! (Especially if he used a PAPER or stainless steel straw, instead of a plastic one.)

Keurigs, which are basically little on-demand water heaters, are a very energy efficient way to heat water for single serving hot drinks, more efficient than teapots or saucepans.

It is super convenient and fast to put a tea bag or a powdered hot chocolate mix right in your mug, and then, using the empty holder that would hold one of the single serving cups,  tap the the “brew” button to get just the right amount of hot water you need to to fit the capacity of your mug.

A coffee filter like this one may be filled with loose ground coffee to make the perfect single serving size cuppa joe.

A Keurig type machine is the most energy efficient way to heat water for hot beverages including tea and hot chocolate.

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Bonnaroo 2017: Festive & Sustainable!

A report by Jacinda Ballantyne 6/14/17

Jacinda Ballantyne, an “under thirty” electrical engineer, took a summer vacay at Tennessee music festival and lifestyle experience Bonnaroo (“where happy campers live, sleep, and play in blissful harmony like it’s permanent recess.”).  It was satisfying to her music loving and planet loving self.  She wrote the following, and gave us permission to publish it:

I just went to Bonnaroo music festival and want to share some of the ways they encouraged sustainability there. It was a great model of how to run a large event with thousands of people and still minimize waste!

1. Everywhere they had a trash bin there were also recycling and compost bins. Volunteers stood near the bins and informed people which bin they should use. (If I ever go back I think I’d like to be one of those volunteers!) And all the paper plates and cups were compostable!
2. They had water bottle refill stations scattered throughout the grounds to encourage people to join the “refill revolution” and refill their reusable bottles instead of buying plastic.
3. A discount was also offered on adult beverages if you purchased a “refill revolution” souvenir cup and used that every time you got another drink.
4. They gave each camper a blue recycling bag as well as a trash bag to use at the campsites.
5. There were solar powered charging stations for people to charge their phones since access to electricity was limited. (My phone died so many times but I found that the charging stations were a great way to make friends ?)

Overall I was very impressed with the effort they took to be green. I loved the saying on their signs: “recycle what you can, reduce what you can’t, and reuse what you’ve got.”

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