Washington (GGM) Analysis | April 17, 2022 by Sarah J. Kings
For years now, we have known that Keurig K-Cups are an environmental hazard. Made from plastic, these little cups are too small to be properly sorted by recycling centers and machines. Billions of K-Cups are piling up in landfills around the world, and many have been incinerated in Keurig’s program, Grounds to Grow On.
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) floats, swirls, and grows in the North Pacific between Hawaii and the coast of North America. It is 1.6 million kilometers around (about 1 million miles), which is three times the size of France and two times the size of Texas. It weighs roughly 80,000 tons, and the only way to view the massive expanse is through photos from space. Discarded fishing lines, nets, and other fishing equipment comprise about half of the mass of the GPGP. Used plastics coming from land make up the vast bulk of the rest of the GPGP. According to the acclaimed documentary, Midway: Message from the Gyre, 136,000 seals, sea lions, and whales are killed each year from the GPGP. Beaches of islands in the vicinity of the GPGP are littered with dead bird carcasses, which are filled with plastics from the patch. If you think you are not affected by this, you are wrong because eventually these plastics will end up on your plate through a process known as bioaccumulation where the plastics pass to organisms and then to humans. And 84% of the plastics contain at least one toxic, cancer causing agent, which makes eating seafood like a game of Russain roulette.
Washington (GGM) Analysis | March 19, 2021 byNoreen Wise
With thecircular economynow in full swing outside the United States, it becomes that much more clear just how many everyday items cannot be recycled. The reality is alarming. We’ll never reach zero waste unless we find innovative solutions to meet this imperative.
Washington (GGM) Analysis | December 6, 2020 by Noreen Wise
It’s exciting to think about all the ways we can rush forward on the climate front in 2021, with John Kerry as the US Climate Envoy, and our 46th President, Joe Biden promising to rejoin the Paris Agreement on the day he’s inaugurated, January 20, 2021.
Washington (GGM) Analysis | July 16, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings
For many of us who menstruate, a visit from Aunt Flo means a week’s worth of pads, tampons, and pantiliners paired with a tub of Ben & Jerry’s and a sprinkling of Midol. Between cramps, bloating, headaches, and checking for leaks, we might be overlooking one major aspect of our periods.
Traditional period products are loaded with plastic. Wrappers, applicators, leak guard liners, and even the products themselves have plastic interwoven in the fibers. These tiny applicators may not seem like much, but they add up. According to National Geographic, Americans purchase 5.8 billion tampons annually. The global number is a staggering 17 billion 400 million! Even worse, the plastic in period products cannot be recycled, as they are considered medical waste— this means that these products ultimately end up in landfills and oceans.
If you are looking for a vegan and planet-friendly way to reduce the negative impact of single-use plastics during your period, don’t stress. You have 3 easy sustainable options! You can try reusable pads, menstrual cups, or period panties. Throughout my last three cycles, I decided to give each a try. I purchased BugaluBaby Bamboo Cloth MenstrualPads, an OrganiCup, and a couple of pairs of Thinx underwear.
I found BugaluBaby on Etsy. I’ve never been big into pads, but these pads come in a variety of fun prints, made with bamboo, and come with a handy “wet bag” for convenience. They are also easy to wash and are very cost-effective, costing only $25 for a pack of 9.
Thinx underwear boasts a similar idea, but it feels less like a pad. In my experience, you can wear one pair throughout the day while still feeling clean and dry. This option works and works well, but it is a little less cost-friendly, costing between $24-$39 per pair.
Lastly, the OrganiCup is a soft, flexible, reliable option that comes in a variety of sizes. For those of us who are comfortable with insertable sanitary items, this is a great option. It is incredibly sustainable and cost-effective. One OrganiCup lasts two years, and costs only $28! All three products have their consumer perks, and most importantly, they are vegan and pack a punch in the fight against the climate crisis!
Twitter – @Thinx
Come back every Thursday to learn more about the role veganism plays in combating climate change!
Over 17 Billion tampons flood landfills and oceans each year
The plastic in pads, tampons, and liners are a major contributor to the climate crisis
Sustainable vegan period options DO exist
If you’re looking for an eco-friendly change, try BugaluBaby Bamboo Cloth MenstrualPads, an OrganiCup or Thinx underwear
Washington (GGM) Analysis | February 18, 2020
by Noreen Wise
The vast majority of plastic waste is product packaging. If our goal is to have a sustainable circular economy, and rid the environment of as much plastic waste as possible, we have to find a series of solutions to overhaul the way we package consumer products.
So why hasn’t Loop become a familiar buzzwordand pathway for all of us to take advantage of for waste free weekly shopping? It’s quite brilliant.
No membership is required
We just pay a small one-time fee at the start for the returnable durable Loop Tote
We’ll use the Loop Tote with each shipment delivery which will eliminate the cardboard waste
All the products are delivered in reusable containers that are returned when we’re through
Most containers are stainless steel, while others are glass
Loop will sanitize each container and reuse
Loop has even managed to solve the toothpaste crisis, which has always seemed too tricky for a feasible alternative. Many of our favorite name brands are Loop partners. But most importantly, Loop is an excellent fix for personal care products that we use everyday and create the bulk of plastic waste.
Innovative creativity is so exciting.I’m IN… can’t wait to check it out!
Washington (GGM) Analysis | February 10, 2020
by Noreen Wise
Recycling has the world’s undivided attention as we strive to reach our lofty goal of zero waste. Proper recycling is of the utmost importance in the new circular economy era. As we attempt to deposit each item into the correct bin, it’s become more clear that the packaging industry has to be overhauled.
Paper labels stickered to a glass container is a very big problem. When glass is pure, it’s 100% recyclable. When paper stickers are added to the mix, it changes everything.
How about the bubble wrap mailing envelopes? Paper on the outside, plastic inside. These can’y be recycled, which is unacceptable.
Toothpaste has to have a package redesign as well. It’s impossible to recycle toothpaste tubes because they can’t be cleaned.
Plastic bags can’t be recycled. This includes bread bags, frozen fruit and vegetables, Saran wrap, sandwich bags, etc.
If we can’t reuse or recycle, we must refuse.
On the subject of cleaning, any plastic container that’s dirty cannot be recycled. Plastic packaging with skinny necks, and there are many, are a very serious problem. The hair conditioner I use, is nearly impossible to clean. I have to work so hard at it, I become aggravated at the selfish business practices of the manufacturer. My time is very valuable. Being forced to be clever and resourceful after a long day of work, so that the manufacturer’s job is easier, isn’t right.
Here’s anexceptional linkthat makes recycling super easy. Just enter the name of the item you want to recycle, and it will tell you how to take care of it.
By the way, plastic shopping bags cannot be recycled either. ZeroWaste.gov recommends that these be recycled by returning them to the store where they came from. Excellent idea! Better yet, invest in reusable bags to make your life easier, and the world a better place.~