Bags are obviously useful for getting items home from the shops and for carrying all the things you need every day. Plastic and cotton bags come in all colours and sizes and they’re everywhere.
In England we used more than 140 plastic bags per person during 2014. In almost every shop you’re offered a plastic bag for your purchases. Single use carrier bags are bad for the environment, especially when people don’t take care and allow them to escape in to the local environment where they get caught in trees, fences and generally create litter in an area.
There are alternatives. You could get a bag for life from the supermarket, have a handbag or backpack you take everywhere or choose one of the many other types of bags out there that can so easily be found in all major clothes shops, department stores and charities.
- Don’t get a new carrier bag. Some shops ask you if you want a bag but others don’t. Tell the shop assistant you don’t need one and take small items home in your pocket or handbag.
- Carry a bag with you at all times. Keep bags in your car, in your bag or in your pocket.
- Make a bag. Transform an unwanted item of clothing in to a fashionable bag.
Find instructions on the internet.
- Take bags to the shops when you are going shopping.
- Use plastic bags as packaging around delicate items.
- Use plastic bags as bin liners.
- If you have plastic bags such as bags around carrots or potatoes, use them to pick up after your dog rather than buying special bags.
- Get creative with old bags you can’t reuse, check out this chicken made from plastic bags and wrapping
- If your bag for life has a hole in it take it back to the store you got it from and they will probably replace it without charge
- Fix your cotton bags by sewing an attractive patch on any small holes.
- Some supermarkets have collection points for carrier bags in their stores, check your local one and tell everyone about it.
Plastic Free July – How can you get involved?
Three years ago, I took part in a Plastic Free July Challenge in our office. Back then, I decided to avoid disposable coffee cups and plastic bottles for a month, and it was the beginning of a journey. I was always aware of the environmental impact of plastics but learning even more throughout that mont…