Climate crisis – New Year Resolutions…its the plastic – stupid?

On the verge on a new year, hell even a new decade, I think 🤔 it will be wise to both look back and forth. What went well, what didn’t go so well and what should be the focus for the next year. Maybe even a New Years resolution?

Looking back, I started this blog in order to provide an open mic, to the worlds overlooked persons – aka the middle aged dad. What is really on their minds when they are not preoccupied by changing diapers, bringing home the bacon(substitute for your veggie of choice), or sleeping 😴.

Well, as you know by know, if you are a regular follower of this blog, the main topics on my mind are – finances, climate change and sustainable lifestyles.

Right in the center of those topics is the concept of zero waste. I am very much in favor of zero wasting. I think it is an absolute necessity in today’s world where we – the people – have been all but abandoned by our elected political leaders – lately put on display at the COP25. Help fighting the climate crisis is not coming from above. It is now by and large up to – we the people to step up.

The problem with zero wasting is that it is really really hard. We have had some early experiences with this in our household when my wife at the start of the year totally bought into the idea. She read books on the topic, switched to soap bars, started shopping at a bulk store in order to cut down on waste, etc etc.

It turned out to be really really hard, especially with three children in the household and we/she basically couldn’t keep up. We used to get our groceries delivered at our doorstep, and then had to bring our own containers to the bulk store to fill them up. We couldn’t do it. Not with full time jobs and three kids.

Early enthusiasm quickly faded, as we were all the time missing cereals & milk, – food basically.

Reflecting a bit on why we had to at least abandon shopping everything 🛍 at the bulk store, my conclusion is that it is simply too hard to change so many habits at once. Because that is basically what it comes down to. Changing habits.

Looking back, I see that there are a couple of these product switches we did, that stuck by. Like our laundry detergent. This one we switched back to the cardboard based packaging. It’s actually a bit weird, because I remember when I moved out of my mom and dads house 23 years ago. Back then I can only remember that I bought card board packaged laundry detergents. Somewhere over time this product had been “developed/improved” into a liquid based version that comes in a plastic bottle – courtesy of the petrochemical supply chain.

A lessor enlightened me, started buying the stuff, but once you become aware of the problem with plastic, it really is a no brainer to just switch back. So we did that, and it sticks. The habit was not too hard to change.

And there we are. Changing lifestyles (and habits) will have to be done slowly. But they have to be changed. There will always be someone that is better then you, and can show you a full years waste they can contain in a simple jar, but please see through all that and just target 🎯 one small habit in your everyday life you believe you can change.

So my New Years Resolution is going to be just that. Not to try to get rid of all our waste. Not to go all vegan/hippie/ forsaker of all things, but just to try to minimize the amount of plastic waste in our household in 2020. We already have a couple of good habits in this area but I will start working with this in a more conscious way.

If you are going to join in waging this war on plastic, here is a list of areas that you may target in the new year;

1. Don’t use plastic straws – even in restaurants.

2. Don’t use a plastic shopping bag – bring your own cloth one.

3. Don’t use chewing gum. A lot of them has synthetic rubber!

4. Buy boxed items (cardboard) instead of plastic wrapped or plastic containers.

5. Purchase food from bulk bins and fill a recyclable bag or container. (This is a hard one!)

6. Reuse containers for storing leftovers.

7.Use a reusable thermo mug for your beverages.

8. Use matches instead of disposable lighters.

9. Cut down on frozen foods, as it is mainly packed and wrapped in plastic.

10. Don’t use disposable razors 🪒. Get a good one and switch the blades only.

11. Don’t buy plastic bottled water/juice/milk. Switch to tab water, and make your own juice.

12. Ditch the plastic lid on your to-go coffee.

13. Use bars of soap instead of the plastic contained.

14. Buy less clothes and wash it less frequent. Will reduce micro plastic.

Happy New Year

/Minimal5

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Please check out these excellent ressources for adopting a financially independent & minimalistic lifestyle;

3 thoughts on “Climate crisis – New Year Resolutions…its the plastic – stupid?

  1. Zero waste is, of course The Goal. But, on the road, changing single-use plastic to single-use cellulose pulp products, is, from ecological point of view, change from bad to worse.
    Cellulose is not a renewable product, it is product of soil and community destruction on great scale. And CO2 emissions from soil destrution are much bigger than alternative plastic production. And, in first world countries there is no risc of envirometal plastic contamination. It is all buried or burned, in the first case lifetime CO2 emissions are close to zero. It is not a case in cellulose, and cannot be.
    We can go to much more details but my conclusion is: cellulose is much worse for the Earth than polyethylene and polypropylene. And there is some polyethylene renewable production, much, much cleaner and enviromentaly friendly than cellulose.

    Like

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