Last month, the European parliament voted overwhelmingly to back a ban on harmful single-use plastics, to try and fight plastic pollution in the oceans and waterways of the world.
This is great news! It shows that the world is now finally waking up to the damage single-use plastic is doing to our planet. Not only that, the European parliament has moved to ban some of the worst offending plastic items, such as cotton bud sticks and disposable plastic food containers by as early as 2021.
In light of this ground-breaking directive, we thought we’d look at some alternative products to the single-use plastic items the European parliament are due to ban in 2021.
Alternative products to harmful single-use plastic items
Single-use cotton buds
Cotton buds are a major problem for the environment, the plastic sticks used to make them are a serious pollutant to our oceans, waterways and beaches. They will float around our oceans for hundreds of years until they are removed, then the weather will eventually fragment them into much smaller pieces, causing the plastic to be digested by marine life, with catastrophic consequences.
The alternative: Biodegradable cotton buds
Thankfully there is a solution to single-use cotton buds. Our biodegradable cotton buds - made with responsibly sourced bamboo and organic cotton - are compostable, making it really easy for you to dispose of them with your normal organic waste! No more flushing or sending them to landfill.
Single-use water bottles
We throw away 50 billion bottles every year, if you can believe it! Many of them end up in our seas and rivers, threatening wildlife and polluting the water on a massive scale. The size of this problem is so vast that environmental campaigners are calling it as ‘serious as climate change’. According to Greenpeace, Coca-Cola alone produces 3,400 plastic bottles a second!
In the UK, only around half of the daily number of plastic bottles used (38.5m) find their way to being recycled. As you can see, we have a serious problem.
The alternative: Reusable water bottles
There is a really simple alternative to single-use plastic bottles, reusable bottles! Coming in many shapes and sizes, reusable bottles are made from stainless-steel, bamboo and silicone. As well as being reusable, the best eco-friendly bottles are 100% BPA free, so they are much better for your health as well!
Single-use plastic cutlery
Single-use plastic cutlery is as much a scourge of our oceans as cotton bud sticks, it’s thrown away as soon as your meal is finished, and ends up in landfill sites, rivers and oceans on a terrible scale. It contributes to the wider pollution of the planet and when eaten by fish, birds and other marine life it can be fatal.
The alternative: Biodegradable bamboo cutlery
We absolutely love bamboo here at EcoVibe! It’s so versatile and has so many uses. When sourced ethically it really is a fantastic material to use as an alternative to plastic. So here it is again, this time we’ve got bamboo cutlery.
Our bamboo cutlery is completely compostable, 100% biodegradable and a great alternative to single-use plastic cutlery. But most importantly, you can use it as many times as you like!
Single-use plastic carrier bags
Just one single-use plastic carrier bag can take around 500 to 1,000 years to degrade in the environment. We use a reported 5 trillion plastic bags a year, so you can see why we have such a problem. The good news is that since the introduction of a 5p carrier bag charge in the UK, usage has dropped dramatically!
The alternative: Reusable tote bags
Reusable carrier bags are a great way to reduce your use of plastic, responsibly sourced cotton tote bags are even better! So, we couldn’t help but recommend our cracking eco cotton tote bags. They’re designed right here in the UK by the team at EcoVibe. What’s more, 5% of profits go to ocean cleaning charities as well.
We can’t talk about replacing plastic bags without mentioning our most popular eco pet product. Our amazing eco-friendly Earth Rated poop bags! They’re just great for cleaning up when Fido does his business, a really simple way to help the planet every day.
Helping you cut out plastic
Here at EcoVibe, we’re big on finding unique, ethically sourced and really useful alternatives to single-use plastic. We’re here to help you replace everyday plastic essentials with eco-friendly items, take a look at our great plastic-free collection to find out what else we’ve got! Check out how EcoVibe's Amy got on with her 'week without plastic' for some inspiration!