Take the Challenge and Refuse Single-use Plastic for Plastic Free July
Plastic Free July is a global campaign that helps millions of people contribute towards resolving the world’s plastic pollution problem so that everyone can have cleaner streets, oceans, and communities.
To date, the movement has inspired over 120 million participants in 177 countries. By choosing to refuse single-use plastic in July millions will be able to find great alternatives to single-use plastic products, which can be taken beyond just this one month. Plastic Free July’s website offers loads of helpful tips and advice as to how you can choose to refuse single-use plastic this July and beyond.
Refuse Single-Use Plastic Bottles with a Reusable Water Bottle
With over a million single-use bottles produced every minute, one of the biggest contributing factors towards the world’s plastic pollution problem is disposable water bottles. By simply getting yourself a reusable, refillable water bottle you’ll be able to avoid buying and discarding unnecessary single-use plastic bottles.
A Water-to-Go bottle provides a reusable, refillable bottle with the added benefit of a unique 3-in-1 filter, which provides clean safe drinking water from any non-salt water source. This means you will be able to avoid single-use bottles anywhere in the world as you will have constant access to clean drinking water.
Additionally, every Water-to-Go filter lasts long enough to replace up to 400 single-use plastic water bottles. This means you’ll be able to significantly reduce your own personal plastic waste by replacing single-use plastic bottles with a Water-to-Go filter bottle.
Water-to-Go’s Top Tips for Avoiding Single-Use Plastic
With more and more awareness about the world’s plastic problem growing each day, there are also more practical alternatives to single-use plastics emerging. As well as some of the fantastic suggestions and advice given by Plastic Free July, we have created a list of just a few ways you can reduce your plastic usage. Some of these things include getting yourself a reusable coffee cup, a reusable carrier bag and even swapping to biodegradable chewing gum. Check out the video below or for a more comprehensive list take a look at our blog post here.
Water-to-Go working to stop Single-Use Plastics
Water-to-Go are also working with organisations such as Incredible Oceans and Travel Without Plastic to help spread awareness about the severity of the world’s plastic pollution problem.
Travel Without Plastic
Jo Hendrix, Founder and CEO, started Travel Without Plastic following countless encounters with unnecessary and environmentally damaging encounters with single-use plastics herself, the final straw being a ‘Styrofoam breakfast’. The organisation works towards one goal; ‘To prevent one Billion single-use plastic items from entering the global waste stream, or worse, our natural environments by the end of 2020′.
Click here to find out more about Travel Without Plastic
Incredible Oceans is a not-for-profit organisation that are helping protect our oceans from plastic pollution. They run education programmes, events and festivals using charismatic marine creatures to tell critical ocean stories in engaging and entertaining ways.
Click here to find out more about Incredible Oceans
Another organisation Water-to-Go is involved with, and another fantastic initiative is, Plastic Patrol. They aim to create a future where people and nature can strive together and are able to do this by combining Stand-Up Paddle Boarding with plastic clean-ups. They regularly run these events all over the UK.
As all of these organisations highlight, there are many ways you can stop using single-use plastics and make a difference with the various alternatives outlined.
Something everyone can do to make a difference is use a reusable filter bottle such as Water-to-Go which will save you over 1500 single-use plastic water bottles over the course of a year. Do your bit for the environment to mark Plastic Free July and use Water-to-Go.
Going to a Festival this summer? Use this Packing List to avoid Single-use Plastic
Every summer millions of people attend British festivals enjoying some of the best live music in the world. However at the same time, a huge amount of plastic waste is being left behind every year. The festivals are starting to take notice themselves with events such as Glastonbury stopping the sale of single-use plastic water bottles. With more and more festivals abandoning single-use plastic products we’ve created a packing list to help you avoid contributing towards the world’s plastic pollution problem. Not wishing to ruin your festival budgeting, if having read this and want to get your own Water-to-Go bottle then please use the discount code FESTIVAL19 for a 19% saving at the checkout.
Overnight Festival Tent
Unless you’re a day-ticket holder, this will be one of your most important items during your time at the festival. This is in a way your home during the festival after all.
Your tent needs will largely depend on how many people you are going with. If you’re travelling with just 2 or three in total you may want to go with your own individual tents or a double and single tent. However, if you’re travelling in a larger group it makes more sense to get yourself one larger tent, which can include your own section if you want some privacy. Gooutdoors.co.uk provide a wide range of festival tents so you will almost certainly be able to find the right tent for you on their website.
Don’t Leave your Tent Behind
Believe it or not, single-use tents seem to be a trend that’s been occurring at many festivals in recent years, especially at the larger festivals. Many festival-goers abandon their tents after the event has finished often due to the fact they think the tents will go to charity or homeless people, according to a recent article by the Telegraph. However, most of the time this isn’t the case and your plastic tent will end up in landfill.
If you’re heading to a #festival this summer, listen to these words from Emily Ford of @BoomtownFair . Your discarded tents will probably end up as landfill.
Although we accept you may be a bit worse for wear on that morning! it’s better to pack up your tents rather than leaving them for landfill and adding to the world’s plastic pollution problem.
Water-to-Go Filter Bottle
Whilst your out in the sun all day it will be essential to stay hydrated throughout the day, especially with the effects of alcohol as well! Carrying a reusable water bottle is a great way to stay hydrated whilst you’re on the go.
The Water-to-Go filter bottles have been tested and proved to filter out over 99.9% of all microbiological contaminants as well as chemicals and heavy metals. This means the bottles are great for festivals as you will be able to fill up from any tap around the venue and have complete confidence that you won’t catch any illness.
Water-to-Go Filter Bottles save you Time and Plastic
Firstly you’ll be saving on your plastic usage as you won’t be forced to buy single-use plastic water bottles. Instead, you can fill from any tap or even puddle and get clean safe drinking water instantly. Secondly, you won’t be waiting in line for ages waiting to buy bottled water or fill up your bottle from the bar.
A Reusable glass for your Alcoholic Drinks
Whilst the Water-to-Go Bottles are able to filter any non-salt water source, they haven’t cracked water into wine yet! However, this does give you another chance to avoid more unnecessary single-use plastic. Bringing a reusable metallic glass means you can get your beers in without having to discard a plastic cup every time you want a drink. I’d make sure to give your glass a wash fairly regularly though.
Bring Your Own Reusable Cutlery
Plastic Cutlery is something that has become common in many takeaway shops and food stalls, and is just another form of unnecessary single-use plastic. A fairly new concept of portable, reusable cutlery is something that can help in preventing the need for knives and forks made from single-use plastic.
These generally come as a cutlery set of knife, fork and spoon with a case so that they are easy to carry around. You can also add a straw to your non-plastic cutlery set to avoid having to discard plastic ones. This could be a good idea as whilst paper straws are starting to become more popularly used, most places still use the single-use plastic straw.
Wellie Boots in case of Bad Weather
Based on the unpredictability of the British weather, bringing a pair of wellie boots can become extremely useful. You should think carefully about your footwear no matter the weather, however being stuck in a field with a brand new pair of trainers will only end badly, especially if it’s chucking it down. Even if they don’t get any use during the festival, it’s worth bringing a pair just in case.
Sleeping bags are a great way to combat the potentially cold nights in your tent. This should keep you warm throughout the night, and some sleeping bags come with a zip feature that allows you to use the items as more of a blanket if it does get too hot.
Air bed or Sleeping Matt
To go along with your sleeping bag, you’ll want some form of comfy, tempory bedding. Whilst you’ll already have your sleeping bag it’s going to be pretty uncomfortable to just sleep in that, so we’d recommend bringing either an Air bed or sleeping matt with you as well.
You’ll need all the energy you can get during your festival, so making sure you get as good a night’s sleep as possible will be very important.
Portable Battery Charger for your Phone
Keeping your phone charged during a festival can be a real challenge, especially for those staying over at least one night. There may be some festivals which have charging stations however, it’s probably more convenient to bring a portable charger, especially for evenings at your campsite.
Power Traveller make an excellent solar-powered portable charger. This means you won’t have to find a power socket if you are in need of even more charge. The charger itself is also pretty light in weight so will be convenient for you to carry with you during the day. The use of solar energy also means you can help reduce your carbon footprint during the festival as you will be avoiding non-renewable sources of electricity.
Plastic Free Toiletries
You’ll need to keep fresh and clean over the course of the festival, especially if you’re staying over at least one night. One of the bigger challenges in going single-use plastic free is when you’re putting together your toiletries for the festival. It can be very difficult to find items like sun cream, wet wipes and shampoo without having to buy some form of plastic.
However, there are still some alternatives available, so you can avoid unnecessary plastic in your toiletries bag.
Reduce your Plastic with a Bamboo Toothbrush
It can be difficult to avoid plastic when you’re compiling your toiletries for the festival although there are some plastic alternatives out there. One great way to avoid buying plastic is to get a bamboo toothbrush. Anything But Plastic makes a brilliant bamboo toothbrush which is far more environmentally friendly than the usual plastic toothbrush.
Bring a Flannel instead of Disposable Wet Wipes
Getting yourself a reusable flannel (face towel) is a great alternative to bringing a pack of wet wipes. You’ll be reducing your waste as you won’t be having to throw anything away after just one use, plus if you find the right company, you won’t have to buy any plastic packaging that will eventually also be thrown away.
Replace Shower Gel with a Bar of Soap
Another replaceable in your toiletry set is your shower gel. Instead of buying shower gel in a plastic container that will eventually be thrown away, you can swap it for a bar of soap which, in many cases, will come without any plastic packaging.
Another interesting development is ‘Naked shower gel’. Lush has developed a solid shower gel that comes without any plastic packaging. Whilst it may look more like a bar of soap, the actual ingredients used to make the product itself is not made from a soap base, and instead uses similar ingredients to their shower gel range.
Plastic Packaging Alternatives
Following on from Lush’s ‘Naked shower gel’, many companies are starting to find creative alternatives to traditional plastic packaging. Similar to this is a shampoo that is packaging free and simply comes in cubes that you can use straight away to wash your hair. So make sure to keep an eye out for new developments that are able to cut out single-use plastic.
A Bum Bag for your Valuables
Also known as the ‘Fanny Pack’ this is a great item for carrying your things around during the day, without having to lug a backpack around with you. This item is becoming more and more popular with festival goers due to its convenience, and with a wide range of designs, you should be able to find one that looks good as well.
It’s also a great way to keep valuables you may be carrying, such as your phone or money, safe. It’ll be important to keep these items safe and secure as there is a strong chance they would fall out of your pockets during the day.
It may seem obvious but make sure to bring the essential bits and bobs you’ll need to actually get into your festival. These include things like your festival ticket, ID, money or cards and any transport/ parking documents.
On June, 8th, we celebrated World Oceans Day. The oceans cover 70% of our planet, so it’s fitting that we join together to celebrate them!
World Oceans Day is the official UN-designated international day of ocean celebration. On June 8th each year, we celebrate the ocean, its importance in our lives, and how we can protect it.
This year’s theme is “Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet” and individuals and organisations across the planet are taking action for prevention of plastic pollution in our ocean.
At Water-to-Go, our mission is to eliminate the need for single-use plastic (SUP) water bottles by offering a safe, environmentally friendly alternative, which delivers clean, filtered water, from nearly any source, anywhere in the world.
So, for World Oceans Day 2016, we take a look at SUP water bottles and how they can affect our planet.
Plastic is used everywhere. Why? It’s extremely durable, lightweight, cheap and versatile, which is why it has replaced materials, such as metal, glass and wood. The global production of plastics is now around 265 million tonnes per year! Unfortunately, plastics are one of the most hazardous forms of litter when in our oceans.
Plastics are made from hydrocarbons and hence, very difficult to breakdown. When they’re in the sea, plastic breaks down at a very slow rate.
“Estimates for plastic degradation at sea range from 450 to 1,000 years. However, plastics may never fully degrade; they simply break down into smaller and smaller fragments and ultimately into microscopic plastic pieces or plastic dust.”– Marine Conservation Society (MCS), Pollution Policy & Position Statement.
The Marine Conservation Society, the largest marine charity in the UK, also highlight the amount of plastics that actually end up in our oceans:
“A study of the distribution and abundance of large marine debris on continental shelves and slopes in European seas recorded concentrations up to 101,000 pieces of debris per km2 (Galgani et al., 2000). At most sample stations, plastic (mainly bags and bottles) accounted for more than 70% of the total debris.”
The MCS have recorded the shocking amount of plastic waste that is made up from SUP bottles:
“During the 2014 Great British Beach Clean 7,962 drinks bottles and 14,750 caps and lids were found. Plastic drinks bottles accounted for 2.8% of all litter and had a density of 69 items/km. Caps and lids accounted for 5.4% of total litter with an average density of 132 items/km.”
So, how do SUP bottles make it into our oceans in the first place? Simple, we live in a throw away society. We all know the importance of recycling, however, it’s not always an option, especially when we are out of the house and there are no recycling bins near by. The situation can be even worse when we’re on holiday. You’re in a hot country so are consuming more water to top up your hydration levels. You may choose bottled water for a number of reasons – you don’t trust the local tap water, it tastes better and is convenient. But unfortunately, not all countries have the resources to recycle. That means we just don’t know where it will end up. Either in a landfill or floating in the Sea where it will be broken down into small enough pieces to be eaten and end up in the food chain. Or worse, it could contribute to the 100,000 marine mammals and 1,000,000 sea birds that are killed each year from ingesting plastics.
So, how can we reduce the amount of plastic bottles in our oceans?
Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
The simplest way is to try and reduce the amount of SUP we consume, and when we do use plastic, make sure we can reuse it and recycle it. As previously mentioned, recycling can be hard when we don’t have a special bin outside but it is absolutely vital in order to prevent plastic pollution.
We have partnered with the MCS this June for their ‘Plastic Challenge’. The challenge is to say goodbye to conveniences like pre-packed sandwiches, ready meals and plastic-bottled drinks for a day, a week or the whole month.
MCS offers help and advice through an online community all through the month of June. There is also an online shop with products to help you say goodbye to plastic waste. Our Water-to-Go, 75cl and GO! Filter Bottles are available and to celebrate the Plastic Challenge we’ve got 15% off using the code MCS16 at checkout. Not only do you get a discount, we’ll match the discount and donate 15% directly to MCS.