Post by Megan, Information Services staff

Plastic Free July is an invitation to make changes in your habits and daily life to eliminate plastic. The challenge began in Australia in 2011 and last year, over 250 million people took up the challenge. 

If you’re thinking plastic is one of the best inventions of the 20th century, you’re not wrong. However, using plastic as a single use item for convenience is bad for our planet. Check out this Sea of Plastic Infographic from Canadian Geographic to get a quick picture of plastic pollution on our planet. Then, head to Plastic 101 to learn about the recycling symbols and the types of plastic that exist in everyday items. 

This year, the challenge looks a little different. There has been a lot of unavoidable pandemic related waste. That’s why it’s even more important to take action where you can.

There are many ways to participate in Plastic Free July. You could go completely plastic free, target the top four takeaway items (bags, bottles, straws and coffee cups) or avoid single use packaging. Any effort you can make is a good one. Register for the official Plastic Free July challenge to get additional information and motivation.

Virtual #PlasticFreeJuly Programs:

Full Circle Foods: Kitchen Tips for Bulk Shopping

Julia, the co-owner of Full Circle Foods, shares her kitchen as well as some tips for bulk shopping and reducing plastic in the video below.

Local, Low Waste Shops

The Region of Waterloo has a Bring Your Own Container Directory for local businesses that support plastic reduction. Check in with those businesses to confirm their status before visiting. Start here:

Green Living Podcasts

Sometimes environmental reading can be overwhelming. Podcasts are a wonderful place to start your low waste journey because many of them feature real people in conversation with locals and experts. Here are some of our favourites, which you can find on the web and other podcast platforms:

More Inspiration

  • Stuck? Check out our Earth Day Challenges for actionable ways to reduce all kinds of waste.
  • Borrow one of these e-books from our collection which are all focused on sustainable living.
  • Do you menstruate? Find your fit with The Menstrual Cup Quiz and have a plastic free period. 
  • Learn from a local youth and watch Why is Plastic Bad? on the youtube channel BE Action Now.
  • Read the latest issue of Rooted, the (You)th Environmentalist Newsletter.

Is there a book you want to read that isn’t in our collection? Use the Suggest for Purchase form to request it – you’ll be added to the holds list if the book is ordered. Looking for more ideas? Call us at 519-743-0271, send an email to askkpl@kpl.org or use our May We Suggest form. 

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