New Year’s resolutions are wonderful. A way to take stock of the things we do and how they impact ourselves, our friends and family, the greater community, and even the planet. Typically, we look at ourselves and say, “How can I be or do better?” Often that starts with personal habits that impact health and wellness – we want to quit smoking, eat more wholesome foods, and get in better shape (there is a reason the gym is crowded on January 2nd!). And those things are important. If we aren’t healthy and well, we cannot help others.
Planet earth cannot make a resolution for itself. We are responsible for taking care of it and in light of the current climate crisis and the abysmal state of our oceans, we have a big task on our hands. At Full Circle, we are planning to make one major sustainable resolution for the New Year to help planet earth become just as healthy and well as we hope to be.
Our resolution is to practically eliminate our consumption of single-use plastic. It sounds simple enough but the ubiquity of single-use plastic has even the best of us falling prey to it sometimes. And plastic, particularly single-use plastic, is swiftly killing our planet. n truth, we aren’t perfect, and we know there will be times that we can’t fight its universal presence. Still, we are going to make a series of green goals that focus on the specific things we can do to avoid single-use plastic in order to do our absolute best.
Green goal #1: We vow to use only a glass or metal water bottles. 50 billion single-use plastic water bottles are consumed in the United States alone each year, of which 80% end up in landfills (we told you a few weeks back about how recycling programs in the US have all but disappeared). And that’s just in the United States, consider the global situation, and particularly that plastic makes up 60-90% of all marine debris.
Green goal #2: We vow to bring our own canvas grocery bags when shopping for anything, not just groceries! Keep some in your car, or one tucked into the side pocket of your bag, you never know when you’ll need it. This way, anytime you shop, even if it’s just for a jar of olives on the way home, you can say to the store clerk, “no, I don’t need a bag.”
Green goal #3: We vow to carry a cutlery kit in our bag. This one is a tougher habit to get into, especially when we want to carry fewer things while we’re out and about. Try to make this a regular thing during the work week at the very least, so that anytime you go for fast-casual, you can skip the plastic utensils.
Green goal #4: We vow to say no to plastic straws. If you can carry a glass or metal one with your cutlery kit, you’re well set up. But how often do we really need a straw? If you don’t have your reusable one on-hand, just skip it altogether. We promise your beverage will taste the same!
Green goal #5: We vow to bring our own reusable coffee or beverage cup. Most cafés are already onboard! Starbucks will even give you a ten-cent discount when you bring your own. Which we know is like a 2% discount on a $5 coffee, but is it really about the discount?
We’re all human and we’ve become so used to living with single-use plastic that it will certainly be a process to learn to live without it. But these are our green goals, lofty but we think, manageable.
Let us know what your #greengoals are and how you plan to live more sustainably in 2020!