REDcycle, Australia's biggest soft plastic recycling program, halted their services until further notice. This is a serious problem because it exposes how much plastic waste we produce as a country, and highlighting that recycling is just a Band-Aid. Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek has said she expects the supermarkets to "step up" and indicate how they will deal with the recycling. But what can we do as individuals to help reduce our plastic waste?
Here are some tips for everyday Aussie to help Australia lower plastic waste.
Reduce your reliance on single-use plastics.
This is perhaps the most obvious solution, but it's also the most important. If we reduce our reliance on single-use plastics, we will automatically reduce the amount of plastic waste that ends up in landfill. Single-use plastics include items like coffee cup lids, shopping bags, and water bottles. Where possible, avoid using these items or find alternatives made from sustainable materials like bamboo, glass or silicone.
Avoid products with excessive packaging
Whenever possible, avoid purchasing products with excessive packaging. This packaging often ends up in landfill and takes years to break down. Choose products that have minimal packaging or that come in recyclable packaging instead.
Purchase recycled products
You can help close the loop on plastic waste by purchasing products made from recycled materials. These products range from clothing and homewares to stationery and toys. By purchasing recycled products, you are indicating to businesses that there is a demand for these items and encouraging them to make more sustainable choices in their manufacturing processes.
Australia produces a lot of plastic waste, and we need to do more to recycle it rather than sending it to landfill. We can all help reduce our plastic waste by reducing our reliance on single-use plastics, avoiding products with excessive packaging, and purchasing recycled products whenever possible. Together, we can make a difference!