Living Without Plastic

Last week, our friend Nora walked us through the basics (and complexities) of plastic.  We started off with some quick & depressing facts about the world’s plastic consumption:

  • Of the 33.6 million tons of plastic discarded every year, 6.5% is recycled
  • 500 billion plastic bags and 35 billion water bottles are used annually
  • Plastic and styrofoam will take anywhere between 500 and 1,000 years to degrade
  • The Great Pacific garbage patch is:
    • 3.5 mil tons in weight
    • Twice the size of Texas
    • Outnumbers sealife 6 to 1
  • 93% of Americans (above age six) have tested positive for BPA

We chatted about what plastic is & how it’s developed:


Recycling Plastic:

On plastic materials, you’ll see a number that indicates what type of recyclable it is. This video breaks down the different types of recyclables:

And luckily, our county accepts them all!


It’s clear to many of us that recycling plastic isn’t enough, since no matter how many times a plastic item is downcycled into other products, it is still a wholly non-biodegradable substance.

Our hot Zero Waste take: avoid and reduce your plastic consumption where possible. Read up on plastic items you can quit right now & buy reusable items instead of one-time plastics.


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