How to Take Part in South Australia’s Ban on Single-Use Plastics

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We’re all guilty of filling the Earth with trash. That’s supported by the WWF data which shows that every single person in Australia uses 130kg of plastic yearly. The worse thing is, only a portion of these plastics is recycled. So the rest just ends up either in the ocean or landfills.

To prevent this from happening again in the coming years, South Australia passed a law that aims to permanently stop the production, sales, and distribution of single-use plastics all around the country. The law was passed last year in September to keep the trash like straws, disposable cutlery, and Styrofoam cups, bowls, and plates away from our oceans.

And just last March 1, 2021, South Australia has started implementing the law, becoming the very first state to ban plastics.

If you’re living or doing business in the area, are you doing your part in eliminating plastic once and for all? If you’re having a hard time keeping up with the plastic ban, this piece is for you.

Below are some great tips that we do ourselves to minimise our plastic waste and reduce and environmental footprint:

1. Practice the 7Rs

Refuse

Refusing to use plastics in the first place is the first step of an eco-friendly lifestyle. If you need large quantities of cups and plates, keep in mind that reusable products are a better alternative for single-use plastics.

Reduce

Relying on single-use plastics too much is not sustainable. If you want to eliminate plastic in your life totally, you can reduce your usage of products that are made with plastic.

Reuse

Instead of throwing the items like plastic containers or plastic bags, you can reuse them as many times as you want. Most of the plastic items today can be washed so you can use them again.

Repurpose

If there are products that you think you can’t reuse due to safety and quality issues, repurpose them instead. Items like plastic bottles can be turned into plant pots or paint containers for your DIY projects

Rot

If you have extra space in your yard, you can make a compost pit for your organic food waste. So instead of throwing them in the trash can, throw them into the pit instead to rot and enrich your soil.

Rethink

Lastly, you have to rethink your lifestyle. If you want to commit to saving the environment, you must change your habits as early as now. Eliminating your habits that often result in unnecessary waste will eliminate plastic in the future.

2. Compostable, biodegradable, and degradable – learn their difference

Degradable – these are the items that are made by mixing plastic with heavy metals. Degradable products can be broken down easily when exposed to extreme heat, all thanks to heavy metals.

So when disposing of these items, you can’t simply bury them in the ground. Instead, they have to be thrown properly in the general waste bin.

Biodegradable – these items are products that, when disposed of, must be buried so microorganisms can break them down. If they end up in landfills, they will still break down. But it may take so much time to be completely broken down.  

Compostable – as much as possible, these are the types of products that you should buy. Because after use, you can simply throw them in the compost pit in your backyard to rot. These items are normally made of natural material, so it won’t take that much time to completely decompose.  

3. Opt for reusables

When dining out, don’t forget to bring your reusable items like cups, straws, spoon, and fork. Most restaurants nowadays allow their customers to bring their own containers so take advantage of it!