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Live like you're in a canoe.

(91 Posts)
Callisto Thu 03-May-07 08:51:15

I watched the BBC Nature program last night about Hawaii (called message in the waves BBC ) and found it really disturbing.

Hawaii is in the middle of the Pacific and works like a net to catch all of the crap chucked into the ocean on the Pacific Rim. This means that the leeward side of the islands are covered in plastic - it looks like a landfill.

Worse is the effect this has on the wildlife, in particular the Albatross are really struggling - they pick up what floats on the ocean assuming it is food but it is plastic. They then feed this to their chicks. The chicks die and as they decompose the plastic they have eaten is exposed - plastic lighters, toys, toothbrushes, golf balls etc. Dolphins, seals and turtles are also dying because they get tangled in or try to eat plastic bags.

It is blatantly obvious that our consumer society is unsustainable. We have such a chuck away attitude to everything and it needs to change before it is too late.

You're probably all wondering where this is leading. Well, I have a challenge for those of you with enough of a sense of social and global responsibility to care. The challenge is to not use or accept a plastic bag for a month. When you go shopping take a reusable bag, leave the plastic bags in the shop and make a real difference to your environment.

For those of you who are brave enough I have a further challenge, the Rebecca Hosking Challenge: campaign to get plastic bags banned in your area/town/village. I am working up the nerve to do this where I live and shall update you on any progress that I make. Thanks for taking the time to read this and lets change the world today.

belgo Thu 03-May-07 08:55:17

Can I accept a plastic bag if I reuse it as a bin bag?

Or do I have to buy real bin bags?

nailpolish Thu 03-May-07 08:57:28

i use my plastic bags as bin bags too

did you see Grand Designs last night?
i was VERY impressed

Cloudhopper Thu 03-May-07 08:57:40

I couldn't agree more Callisto. We have made a few resolutions in this house along the same lines, following a programme by Jonathon Porritt about consumerism.

I will try the plastic bag challenge. Thanks for posting this.

littlelapin Thu 03-May-07 08:59:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Boco Thu 03-May-07 09:00:52

I read about Modbury the other day, it's a good idea.

We have big string bags (glamorous) and it takes only 3 of them to get our whole weekly shop in as they really stretch, so we never have to get plastic bags in the supermarket, then i've got a hessiany square green bag for local shopping. We can quite easily go a week without getting a plastic bag. Even in our local baker, you can choose plastic or paper - so obviously always go for paper.

Callisto Thu 03-May-07 09:03:42

Belgo and Nailpolish - I think you are missing the point rather plus you can buy biodegradable bags for your rubbish. And tbh if you want to discuss a tv program start a different thread please.

pudding77 Thu 03-May-07 09:06:55

Callisto, you've inspired me, will also try no plastic bags!

Callisto Thu 03-May-07 09:07:28

You can get some really funky shopping bags - I've got a big bright stripy straw/hessian one which doubles as a beach bag. We use Tesco reusuables when we do the dreaded supermarket shop.

littlelapin Thu 03-May-07 09:09:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

throckenholt Thu 03-May-07 09:11:11

what about food (lunch) bags though ? - I have never seen paper alternatives for sale - and I am fairly certain the plastic ones are not biodegradable (although not sure why they shouldn't be).

nailpolish Thu 03-May-07 09:13:53

Callisto, ok i get your point about the bags

and the tv prog i was referring to is relevant to the thread

but you obviously have no interest in other peoples POV etc


MuminBrum Thu 03-May-07 09:14:45

Throckenholt, you can use tupperware or similar for lunches, surely?

Callisto Thu 03-May-07 09:14:57

Apologies, but an eco-friendly house is a bit different to a ban plastic bags campaign. I can see your point but I don't want to dilute the impact of this thread either.

Biodegradable bin bags are available everywhere now and I assumed that everyone knew about them but for those that don't here is a link: here

If you don't want to do mail order most supermarkets stock them too.

nailpolish Thu 03-May-07 09:15:51

jesus, are you always this narky?

sorry for "diluting" your thread

Boco Thu 03-May-07 09:16:04

And wrap food in greaseproof paper rather than use sandwich bags

foxinsocks Thu 03-May-07 09:16:22

throck - sainsburys now do degradable plastic lunch bags (well it says they degrade 30 times quicker than plastic!). Or you could always wrap the sandwiches in foil instead (which can be recycled).

ekra Thu 03-May-07 09:16:33

Lakeland have some blue jute bags which are only £3.50 each. We only need 4 into which we pack our fortnightly shop.

Boco Thu 03-May-07 09:17:34

Callisto it's a great idea, but the only diluting will be if you're snappy with people who are showing genuine interest and they bugger off because they've been offended.

belgo Thu 03-May-07 09:17:54

as I have obviously totally missed the point, I think I'll go out and do some shopping.

oliveoil Thu 03-May-07 09:17:55

we reuse our Tesco carrier bags and then use them for binbags

BUT I have on order two crate things from Lakeland (will link in a bit) which you put in your trolley and take into your house, meaning you don't need bags

Most shops now ask if you need a bag iirc

and I noticed yesterday that Primark have brown bags now instead of plastic

expatinscotland Thu 03-May-07 09:18:35

Can someone buy me an eco-friendly house?

I'll gladly live in one, but I can't afford any house now, so I'm stuck with what my landlords put in, no matter how 'eco-friendly'.

I'll most obligingly accept any eco-friendly house someone has to donate, though .

As for lunch, how about putting it in a Tupperware container?

I mean, Duh!

Doesn't get squished in your bag, either, as it would if it were wrapped in greaseproof.

Then it could get all over my makeup, perfume, purse, etc.


oliveoil Thu 03-May-07 09:18:55

oooh ekra, they might be the same things

will find them

expatinscotland Thu 03-May-07 09:19:47

I was wondering where all the brown bags went!

They're fab for ripening avocados, tomatoes and bananas.

oliveoil Thu 03-May-07 09:21:31


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