Drinking To Avoid Micro-plastics

 
In Evian you can fill your own bottle with water direct from the mountains

So, we've had a look at how plastic bags are a real danger to animals and that they are killing and harming sea life.

It's not just plastic bags that are causing problems though.

Plastic is extremely useful, but when we throw it away it starts to cause problems and because we're using so much of it and have used a lot of plastic for decades, the plastic we're throwing away is becoming a huge problem.

A new Irish study has found that most deepwater fish have ingested microplastics.

Our oceans aren't just full of plastic bags, they are full of plastic particles from broken plastic bottles and all sorts of things. People searching British beaches are finding particles of broken plastic as well as nurdles, which are the small pieces of plastic used by manufacturers to make plastic products.

These tiny pieces of plastic are being eaten by fish and other edible sea creatures and so are finding their way onto our plates and into our bodies.

As I have already said, plastic if very useful and sometimes it's important to use plastic.  However, a very wasteful and damaging way to use plastic is to make plastic bags, bottles, cups and straws etc to be used once and then thrown away.

I looked at plastic bags in my last post, so today I want to look at plastic we use when drinking, and in particular plastic bottles.

 

Bottled Water

I have to confess to being a fan of bottled water. When I visited people in France and Germany as a teenager they all  drank bottled water telling me their tap water was poor quality. In those days most of the water came in glass bottles. I have a well developed sense of taste and I often find tap water tastes unpleasant. Chlorine isn't at all pleasant, but perhaps sometimes I just need to get used to water that tastes a bit more of iron than I'm used to.

I've been very resistant to changing my bottled water habit, especially in Summer, but I have recently started thinking about the damage I'm doing.

Perhaps I've been able to think about changing my habits because I'm less stressed just now. Over the last several years we seem to have had one elderly relative after another in a nursing home or needing care, but we don't just now. If you've got a lot of stress in your life I don't want to add to it, but the health or our planet depends on us all using a lot less plastic bottles, so I hope you'll feel able to think about doing that.

This video from the Story of Stuff might help you think about drinking less bottled water. I know it's made me think.
 

So now I have bought myself a reusable plastic bottle to carry around, especially in the summer when it's warm and I might get thirsty.  I had bought a stainless steel one earlier but even an aluminium bottle is heavy to carry around and the water can taste metallic, although you'll probably get used to that. The downside of plastic is that it is very absorbent, so it's important to wash and dry it properly to remove germs.  It's not the best thing for carrying milk or any strong flavoured liquid around as it absorbs flavours.

With care my plastic bottle should last me years.  I'm filling it with water from glass bottles than has travelled from Scotland at the moment, but after watching the Story of Bottled Water I can see I should probably start using tap water, or move to Evian where you can fill your own bottles and jugs as much as you like with mineral water straight from the mountains for free.

There is a wide range of reusable drinks bottles on the market so you must choose which one suits your needs best. If you've found one you like already please leave a review in the comments telling us what you're using and why you like it. If you're aware of any downside or why it might not suit some people please tell us about that, too.

Do you have any tips for remembering to take your bottle with you whenever you need it?
 

A More Sustainable Pinta

While we're on the subject of bottles have you considered milk from the milkman? If the extra cost puts you off could you manage to buy half your milk in glass bottles from your milkman?  Even one pint a week would be a bit less plastic over your lifetime.

To stop using single use plastic entirely would be the ideal we could all aim for, but I know it's not easy, so using less of it would be a wonderful start. Once we're aware of ways to avoid single use plastic it should start to get easier to use less and less.

We were getting three pints from our milkman three times a week and buying the rest from the supermarket. Having recently become more aware of just how much damage plastic is doing I've upped it to four pints each delivery and sometimes order a fifth pint on a Saturday. That's as many milk bottle as will fit in our fridge door and we have a small fridge as it is, so I still need another litre of milk in a plastic bottle to see us through until the milkman comes again on Tuesday morning.

Do you get milk from a milkman? Tell us how it's working for you.
 

Fizzy Drinks

If you're a fan of fizzy drinks buying them in cans would mean you're not wasting plastic. If your health is as important to you as the health of the planet then you might want to cut down anyway. I used to enjoy a drink of Cola until I heard about the way the Coca Cola company uses excessive amounts of water in countries where water is scarce and also that pollutes water. I've avoided any of their drinks since then and now rarely have a fizzy drink. If you do a Google search you'll find several articles like this one: Coca-Cola forced to close India bottling factory over excessive water use, pollution.

Greenpeace name "Pepsi, Nestlé, and Coca-Cola as worst contributors to single-use plastic pollution".

Have you cut back on fizzy drinks?

Mike Prettyman CEO, Green Fire Engineered Reclamation, Member GreenFire DAO Whatsapp only Phone: 1-602-315-1571 Skype: mike.prettyman Website: https://childrenofthelandfill.com email: greenfirereclamation@gmail.com