Creating a plastic free village
People, living in and around East Haven have decided to take up the challenge of creating a plastic free village in an effort to raise awareness about the damage plastic is causing the environment and to reduce waste. It is no easy feat because plastic is so much a part of our daily lives to the extent that we don't always know we are even using it. Tea bags, being a case in point as they contain polypropylene which helps them keep their shape. Apparently more than 9 tonnes of plastic waste is created every year in the UK from tea bags alone. We have now been holding litter picks and beach cleans for 25 years so we are well aware of just how much plastic waste is being produced. We realise that every person on the planet has a responsibility to stop using single use plastic items and use materials which are reusable and eco-friendly.
In 2015 we developed a sustainability strategy for the village which now links with Scotland's 2020 outcomes for Biodiversity, Sustainable Scotland themes and the United Nations Global Goals. Linking to higher level outcomes in this way helps us, as ordinary citizens to undertsand that every action we take on a personal or village level contributes directly to improving the world on a global scale. In other words, acting locally, thinking globally and what we do today influences how the next generation will live.
In the future, we hope that sustainable new bio-plastics will replace the damaging plastics which are currently in use. However, we are acting today to do what we can to reduce single use plastic in the village and we will use this page to inform you of our progress month by month.
As the Co-op is the first retailer to start making a fully biodegradable paper tea bag in it’s 99 tea range East Haven Together will only purchase this brand for village activities.
We will encourage people to switch brands and avoid brands such as PG tips who apparently have no plans to reduce the plastic in it's tea bags.
We will stop providing single use cups at our events.
Any cups we do provide will be recyclable/compostable e.g on the cycle path at Mary’s Meals corner.
We are are planning to install a fresh water drinking tap near the heritage point to enable people to fill their own reusable cups and bottles whilst on the go.
March 2018 - Making our own cleaning products!
March has seen residents making their own cleaning products for the 'Wee Gallery'. Normally, we use lots of single use plastic bottles containing eco cleaner but having done some research have decided to start making our own. Apart from the fact that we can reduce the amount of plastic we use it is also good to use less chemicals. Our public toilets are reliant on the village septic tank so it is important we do what we can to protect the septic tank from toxic chemicals to enable it to function naturally. You never know, maybe we will start selling it - Safe Haven cleaning products!
Biodegradable Bin Bags
February saw residents planning and purchasing stocks for the public toilets which we have been managing since 2015. We have prided ourselves on the high standards of cleanliness we maintain but we are not very proud of our track record on the use of single use plastic in the facility. After some debate about plastic swing bin liners we have concluded that there is a justifiable need to continue using some sort of liner in our waste bins. However, it's not until you start to look that you realise how hard it is to purchase biodegradeable bags. Certainly our local supermarkers don't sell anything other than small compostible food bags. We therefore obtained some samples from online suppliers and eventually settled on this one which is fully biodegradeable.
Did you know?
The Green Dot does not necessarily mean that the packaging is recyclable, will be recycled or has been recycled. It is a symbol used on packaging in some European countries and signifies that the producer has made a financial contribution towards the recovery and recycling of packaging in Europe.
Did you know?
The majority of black plastic packaging is not able to be sorted by the optical sorting systems widely used in plastics recycling. As a result, black plastic packaging commonly ends up in landfill. Let's reduce what we buy and tell our local retailers that we don't want them to use it.