My resolution this year is to try and be more environmentally friendly and I have created a little hashtag #ecosparkles2018 to illustrate my efforts over the year. I want to see how easy it is to be more ecologically aware by adopting very simple habits, for example I’m hoping not to buy any plastic bags this year or use any disposable cups. Today was my first big test with a trip to big town. I was prepared, I had several bags for my shopping, a reusable coffee cup and I even cheekily took some spare coat hangers I had from my decluttering yesterday to see if I could recycle them in a shop. There were some successes today, I used all the bags and didn’t need any additional and the Sainsbury’s cashier happily agreed to recycle my hangers.
However there were some little things I hadn’t prepared for, the trip took longer than anticipated and Little Miss and I needed a quick bite to eat. The green and more comfortable option would have been to pop into a café but I was on a tight timescale so we ended up with a takeaway, my daughter’s lunch was served simply in a paper bag, a pretty good packaging option and I had a takeaway salad in a plastic box with a plastic fork, not great eco packaging. However to try and make the best of the situation, I took our used packaging to the recycling area of a supermarket as there were no recycling bins in the shopping precinct. Unfortunately the area was only for recycling clothes, paper, books and silver foil. I couldn’t take the used tub home as it had dressing in it which might spill onto my other shopping, so despite my best intentions and search for a green option I ended up throwing it away and feeling guilty. That was frustrating as I had looked hard for a recycling option and it wasn’t there. This was in a busy town centre and I would have expected some recycling bins around the shops, takeaways etc.. to help people make little green gestures.
My other observation from today was around cruelty free make up. I went to Superdrug today which has a good reputation for cruelty free products. I found some of the brands I was looking for and bought a new foundation and mascara which I needed. What surprised me was the air miles involved in these products as some were made in China. To me this also raises the ethical argument of China being the country which is insisting on testing on animals, producing cruelty free make up which I presume cannot be sold in the state. It just doesn’t sit right with me on a number of levels so as well as cruelty free, I’m now looking for make up not made in China and with as few air miles as possible.
Today’s trip has shown the need to be prepared, that you can ask shops to help you be more eco friendly, eg the recycled coat hangers but that there is much more to be done by councils to encourage recycling in busy town centres.