Saturday 9 March 2024

Out For The Count


Just a heads up that next week [March 11-17th] is the second Big Plastic Count. I was almost caught out here- in 2022 it was May 16-22. I am not sure why it is two months earlier this year. But I have my chart up in the kitchen ready, and will note what household plastic waste we generate at Cornerstones.

There is lots of information on the website, and it is not too late to get involved. 
The main aim of this week is to investigate just how much plastic waste is being generated in our homes - with a view to bringing pressure on the government, and major supermarkets, to decrease this.
The 2022 survey discovered that a quarter of a million people generated 6.5 million pieces of plastic in just one week. And that
46% was incinerated
25% went to landfill
17% was shipped overseas
and only 12% was actually recycled
Sadly the government has been slow to respond - and the UK tops the plastic charts - we produce more plastic waste per person than any other nation in the world except the US.
This is a health crisis- micro plastic particles have been found in human blood. breast milk and placentas.
The Global South is hit the hardest - the health of 2 billion people there is affected by dumped waste.
The survey is only about plastic packaging, and the website explains exactly what needs to be counted. When I did it in 2022, it really made me think about the way I shop.
Eighteen months ago I went to look round the Norfolk Environmental Waste Services plant on the edge of Norwich - that definitely had an effect on the way I recycle.
This week is organised jointly by Greenpeace and Everyday Plastic, working with WRAP and RECOUP.

This is not just a week of meaningful activities for schoolchildren - we all need to collaborate on this.
I'm doing my part, for the sake of Rosie, Jess, George and Jacob and all those other children growing up. Why should they have to clean up the mess created by a previous generation?


  1. Plastic waste washed up on the beach is awful, everything seems to come in plastic these days.

  2. Our local clean the beaches group collected 26 bags of waste last Saturday. Also yards and yards of rope! Ongoing battle towards no plastic use. I've sent away for some eco friendly cleaning samples to avoid buying anything that comes in a plastic container.Using those laundry sheets too. The supermarkets need to gen up on their plastic use issues. Not everything's about convenience. I realise budget is a huge consideration for families, as it is for me being a pensioner but we could all do a teeny tiny bit to save our planet, even if it's just volunteering for a beach clean up.

  3. I agree with you. Why have they felt the need to change things? When I first married, I bought suet for dumplings, in a paper bag inside a cardboard box. Now the supermarket sells it in a non recyclable plastic bag (which rips and has to be decanted because who uses a whole packet in one go?) I suppose the cheaper plastic bag makes them more profit. I am boycotting this - although sadly the suet in a box has an inner plastic bag too

  4. Plastic is everywhere here in the US. It seems that few people try to do anything about it. Even most of the young adults I teach aren't aware that it's a problem. We need more education and action!

  5. A worthy effort and those in charge should PAY ATTENTION!!


  6. Plastics seem to be almost unavoidable. Sometimes there is an alternative, in fact one bread company now uses cardboard bread tags on their plastic bread bags! (It's a start, I guess.). I do at least reuse those bags for kitchen waste, a second use at least, but the frozen fruit and veggies that I often buy in winter, all come in unrecycleable heavy duty ziplock bags. I can't repurpose them all, but if I ever have time, I will turn my collection into some kind of woven bag.

  7. Most of my frozen stuff comes in heavier plastic bags which I can recycle at the supermarket. One of the British charities which helped rough sleepers used to ask for waterproof blankets knitted from carrier bags, I recall.

  8. Thank you for the heads up! I don't think we do anything similar, here, in the US, but, I shall try to keep track of the plastic items I dispose of, next week.

  9. The whole thing makes me so cross! Kx

    1. Just keep doing your bit - every little helps

  10. Many farm shops in the UK stock loose frozen fruit and veg supplied by a company called Fieldfare. My local shop allows customers to use their own containers for this. I only ever buy peas, and I'm not sure how the prices compare with a supermarket, however I like being able to buy frozen veg without creating plastic waste! Pam


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