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Why We Should Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Single-Use Plastic, Environment, Plastic Waste, Climate Crisis, Climate Change

Why We Should Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

When we buy a product, we not only buy the contents but we also buy the packaging that that comes along with it. The main purpose of this packaging is for hygiene and convenience, and hardly serves any purpose once the product is opened. As per the Packaging Council of NZ, New Zealanders consume about 735,000 tonnes of packaging every year and recycle only about 58% of it. Thus, it is imperative that we take responsibility for our waste footprint, and more specifically plastic waste.
 
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The government has taken measures to cut down the use of single use plastics, but we must all do our best in order to make a difference. The ban on plastic bags is an amazing example of the fight against single use plastics. Plastic free July, is another wonderful example of how people are recognising the adverse impacts of plastics and trying to fight it.
 
Most supermarkets have replaced single use packaging with recyclable bags of type (1) and (2). These bags are widely used when buying almost all types of fruits and vegetables. Do make sure to put these bags in the recycling bin as these can be effectively recycled. Even the meat containers are now made from plastic type (1) which is the same material as water bottles and can be recycled effectively.
 
Another way we can reduce single use plastics is by buying unpacked food, using
paper/bamboo/steel straws, using paper bags, carrying reusable bags with us each time we go out to buy things, using your own coffee mug, voting for change in environmental policies, etc. In one of the previous articles, we spoke about how using banana leaves could be a feasible solution to ending single use plastic packaging. If everyone does their part, we can definitely reduce the amount of single use packaging that end up in oceans and landfills.
 
9 reasons to refuse single-use plastic
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Auckland Council has adopted a “Zero-Waste Policy” to lead the way in achieving zero-waste status by 2040, which makes zero waste a key aspect for all of us New Zealanders. Let’s start by reducing the number of single use plastic items we buy and work towards using organic and more sustainable alternatives to single use packaging.
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