It’s great to see people trying to make a difference and be a little more conscious about their consumption and the environment. In the wave of popular trends we see happening, the word sustainability, has become front and centre. I see many people buying a reusable water bottles, coffee cups and bringing their own bags to the grocery shops and market. It looks like we are moving in the right direction and I don’t doubt peoples intent.
But how do corporation giants cash in on this trend?
How can we change and adjust our mindset and mentalities to a useful and actual sustainable way of thinking?
These mentalities that we have grown into from a society of consumerism and convenience. We are in such a rush everywhere and we don’t have have time to think. Think about how our actions actually impact on the environment around us.
The word sustainability…
…has developed into numerous meanings within the last two decades. In its simplest terms it means to be able to sustain oneself by meeting the needs of the present without having to comprise on future resources.
Sustainable fashion involves wearing used or old (vintage) pieces of clothing instead of buying new. This helps to save on earths resources, save money (its usually very cheap) and you end up with your own personal style. See my Slow fashion page for more inspo.
Single use plastic….
however, is not sustainable. Although plastics were a great invention of their time, they are not respected as such. They are misused by the masses. Plastics are made from crude oil. There are many different types and they can take from 50- 400 years to degrade.
Single use plastic bottles are a main concern for environmentalists and activists. Coca cola alone made 120 billion plastic bottles a year and 9% of that plastic was recycled. That would mean of the 120 billion plastic bottles created by coca cola alone, 109.2 billion of those bottles will end up in the landfill on our shores and in our oceans, every year…… Eventually making their way into our own water and food sources. It’s a scary number and seems overwhelming to think of it. This is why we are encouraged to have a reusable bottle and to-go coffee mug.
A great option to try and cut down…
The different colours and designs we can have on our Keep cups and bottles makes it even more appealing to join in. Where there’s money to be made however, MNC’s, businesses and influencers will always use marketing tactics to hone in on whatever craze is in the limelight. The latest one being reusable bottles and cups.
For example, If we saw a bottle that had a unicorn and rainbows on it or one with an batman logo, we feel like we want it because the design appeals to us. Yet most of these fancy cups and bottles are produced from cheap materials and do not stand the test of time. You are choosing this purely out of appearance as apposed to practicality sake. Possibly another cup or bottle that appeals will appeal to you more and the other gets lost, or thrown out eventually.
It’s not our fault. its how we are programmed to function.
…is an behaviour or act whereby a company or person in power, promotes environmentally friendly or sustainable ideas to try and cover up their lack of action on the issue. Irrelevant claims to helping the environment and overstating the green message are just some examples of greenwashing
So let’s beat them at their own game. Try and buy from independent and sustainable shops. It might be a little pricier but the quality of the bottles they sell are great and an investment.And you’re helping local people earn an honest living promoting sustainability.
Before buying any item…
…ask yourself these simple questions…
1.Do I need it or do i want it? are you buying this for the sake of it or because you do need it ?
2.How much of an impact will this have on the planet. What resources were used to make the bottle and how recyclable are the materials ?
3.Is it good quality? Will you have to replace any part within the next year or so, or would you have to replace the whole bottle if something broke, let’s say for example the lid of the bottle.
4. Do I like it? It might be a silly question but sometimes we can get excited when we see something that it becomes an impulse buy. We want to reduce that so ask your questions and the walk away, go do other errands and have a think about it. If you really like it, you can go back, if you decide you’ve changed you mind, then you’ve saved yourself money and reduced waste by choosing not to buy something that you would have eventually gotten sick of.
This is why it’s good to change your mindset about how you purchase things. When you change your mindset about how you purchase, you will find yourself becoming more appreciative of the things you have. It will help with cutting down on your consumption which is good for you and your pocket as well as the environment, saving precious resources, energy and money.