Beth Terry :10 steps to take to start your plastic-Free Living during pandemic

The global demand for PPE has caused a concurrent uptick in demand for single-use plastics, facing this crisis, what can we do to reduce the pollution when we under the social-distancing? Why not take some advice from Beth Terry, the author of Plastic Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too.

Yesterday, a report shows coronavirus is “causing a flurry of plastic waste due to the rapid expansion in the production of desperately-needed plastic products”, including surgical masks, gloves, protective equipment…etc.

In this very time, the best thing we could get as a result of coronavirus is we can spend less time in commute, which also means we can do more things than usual if we want to do the planet a favor, it is time to learn how to living without plastic.

Andy Zhang, a student who started his plastic-free life during the pandemic told us, the crisis of COVID-19 alerted him how powerful nature is, and made him decide to be more care and respect to the environment. He shares the story of how he started and get used to the plastic-free lifestyle.

Small changes matter

The enormity of the situation can seem overwhelming, however, we still believe the smallest change can make a big impact regardless of where you start.

Like many people, Beth Terry didn’t think an individual could have much impact on the environment. But while laid up after surgery, she read an article about the staggering amount of plastic polluting the oceans, and decided then and there to kick her plastic habit. During the past decade, she writes about how she kicked the plastic habit in books and at her website. Beth Terry knows that it’s not realistic to ask people to give up all plastics. But, she feels that if everyone could be more mindful about it, we could create powerful change for the better planet.

Photo Credit: Micaela Preston

On her website, she provided 100 steps to start a plastic-free living, also here are some easy steps for you to developing a new habit of life without plastic.

Eat without plastic:

  1. Give up bottled water.

Beth believes bottled water is bad for our health. She used to enjoy the water in a reusable stainless steel bottle.

She doesn’t recommend reusable plastic or aluminum bottles. “It’s not as stringently regulated as municipal (tap) water, and chemicals from the plastic can leach into the water.” She writes.

2.Carry reusable shopping bags

Reusable canvas totes are popular as substitutes instead of plastic bags, and for people who often forget to carry one on the way to shopping, Beth tells us her tips: fold it and “carry several of them in purse”, then you will always carrying them.

3.Choose plastic-free chewing gum.

Almost all chewing gum is made of plastic, be cautious when you select. Learn more in plastic in chewing gum.

4.Compost food waste to avoid plastic garbage bags

Beth has recorded how is she use composter at home to handle the food waste in her blog.

Wash without plastic

5.Wash clothes with homemade laundry soap and stain removers.

Look for soap nuts in plastic-free packaging. Treat laundry stains with a borax/water paste or with a handmade laundry stain bar, and get other plastic-free laundry ideas from Beth here.

6.Clean with vinegar and water.
A mixture of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water can be an all-purpose spray cleaner.

7.Use natural cleaning cloths and scrubbers instead of plastic scrubbers and synthetic sponges.

“Compressed natural cellulose sponges are often sold without any plastic packaging,”
Beth writes, “Natural fiber brushes are great for cleaning water bottles and scrubbing dirty dishes.”
Besides, Beth also recommends rags made from old clothing and towels.

8.Use Plastic-Free Bite Toothpaste Bits instead of toothpaste

Bite toothpaste bits are little vegan tablets stored in a glass bottle that foam up and quickly become toothpaste when you chew them.” Beth introduces.

And these bits are shipped in “a plain padded paper envelope with paper tape and no plastic.”

Bite toothpaste bits

Shopping without plastic

9.Take care of what you already have.
Avoid buying new stuff by keeping the stuff we do have in good condition. Not only environmentally friendly but also saving money!

10.Request zero plastic packaging when ordering online.

Be responsible

Besides all the tips Beth mentioned, “be responsible” sounds obvious, however, under the pandemic, the old problem – irresponsibility – are leading new situations now, the issue of littering is more “outstanding” than before.

A street in Australia

Living without plastic could be hard but it worth it and you will never be alone. Subscribe to our website and let us do our best to reduce plastic on the planet, it could be helpful.

Author:Jiaxin Qian

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