It’s Plastic Free February, and now is the time to join people all over in eliminating single-use plastic one day at a time for one month. People all over are signing up for Plastic Free February. Thanks to our friends at Human Powered Movement, you can sign up for free over on their site!
Plastic Free February is a two part challenge for individuals, families, businesses, and communities that not only creates positive impact, but also raises awareness about the importance of eliminating single use plastics year-round.
Part 1 is to go single-use plastic free for the month of February and Part 2 is a month-long contest, with prizes from Recover Brands, HPM, and Summit Coffee, to see who can gather the most trash and the oddest piece of trash during their human-powered activities throughout the month of February.
To help you out for your Plastic Free February, we’ve put together some Recover Sustainability Tips for eliminating single-use plastic throughout your day. We’ll leave it up to you to figure out how to find the oddest piece of trash for the challenge!
Wake up. Brush Yo’ Teeth.
Last year, 1.2 billion toothbrushes were thrown away in the U.S. alone, and over 99% of them are plastic. That’s 1.2 billion toothbrushes that end up in landfills, rivers, and oceans throughout the U.S. in just one year, which, if you lined all of those toothbrushes up, would wrap around our earth four times. Check out bamboo and other alternatives to plastic toothbrushes in It’s Time to Clean Up Your Toothbrush. Plastic Free February is the perfect time to get a new plastic-free toothbrush!
And here’s a bonus tip- ever think about all the plastic and non-recyclable packaging for your toothpaste and dental floss? Us too. And companies are on it- check out BITE Because It’s The Earth bathroom products to easily eliminate single-use plastic from your entire dental hygiene regime.
Yum. If you’re headed out to work or for an adventure outside for the day, pack your lunch and snacks in reusable tupperware and bags. Check out this list of alternatives, which includes Stasher bags and stainless steel sandwich containers. Single-use plastic bags flood our backyard and global plastic waste and problem- getting on board with these alternatives is a huge help. You can also check out our Recover bamboo utensils to add to your lunch kit. Our pro-tip is to keep track of the plastic-free alternatives you get - AKA keep ‘em for life to make a real impact vs. having so many extra that you lose track of them.
Morning hot drink on the run.
It’s estimated that 50 billion paper coffee cups are thrown away in the US every year. Most to-go cups are made of a difficult-to-recycle mix of paper and plastic, so even if you throw them in the bin marked “recycling”, it’s wishful recycling that creates more problems than perks for a recycling center. That’s right- “paper” cups are not actually simply made of paper but include a layer of polyethylene and end up in the landfill. The real fix is simply to bring your own reusable mug.
Check out Recover ambassador Kalob Grady’s “Travel with Your Mug” tips for more.
Bring your bags to the store.
Headed home, it’s time to go to the grocery store. Before you go, consider this:
- Worldwide, 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed every year.
- This means that at a minimum, almost two million plastic bags are used and discarded every minute of every day around the globe.
- Within the US alone, 100 billion plastic shopping bags are used and discarded annually, which costs retailers an estimated $4 billion.
- Plastic bag trash has been found in the world’s most remote places, from floating as far north of the Arctic Circle near Spitzbergen, to as far south as the Falkland Islands, to as deep as the Mariana Trench (the world’s deepest ocean trench, which extends 36,000 feet down).
Yup, that’s enough to make us double check for our reusable bags before we go too- this is an easy problem NOT to contribute to. At the store, go for unpackaged veggies and food goods when possible and bring recycled and reusable bags for those too. Check out Recover’s reusable bags and the read Go Old School: Learning more about plastic bags will bring back old habits for more.
This one just stands alone. Have fun!
Believe it or not, there are shampoo and conditioner bars, just like there are soap bars. This is HUGE when you think about reducing single-use plastic packaging. Go for unpackaged product options when you shop for shower-time. Here are some options to get you started.
Often forgotten compared to bringing your cup for your morning hot drink is that you can also bring your reusable mug to concerts and events for beer, wine, water, or whatever your drink of choice is. Throw your reusable mug when you head out for your evening and enjoy being single-use plastic free!
You can follow us on Instagram @RecoverBrands as well as @HumanPoweredMovement and share your Plastic Free February Journey! Let’s do this!