We live in a world full of plastic. The problem? We can't get rid of it any more!
Oceans full of plastic
Plastic decomposes. Depending on the product, this can take several hundred years. But watch out; plastic does not dissolve, it “only” decomposes into so-called microplastics. The smallest particles that ultimately end up in our waters, rivers, and oceans.
At least 8 million tons of plastic end up in the oceans every year.
© Christine Gstöttner
© Denise Smolinsky
© Christine Peters
For a sensible use of with plastic and a balanced ecosystem a rethink is required.
We consumers can change the way we deal with plastic. And thus also give the industry to develop and market ecological alternatives and bring them to market.
Responsible use of plastic means:
- Protection of (marine) ecosystems
- Conservation of resources
- Reducing the world's mountains of waste
- Protection of personal health
Keeping an overview is not easy. The issue is complex. But every individual can make a contribution. It's not about how much, but about taking the first step.
We have a small collection of tips, and tricks on how to leave your own ecological footprint step by step.
Use plastic intelligently. Pay attention to reusability and long-lasting use. Consider other possible uses before disposing of them (and adding to the mountain of rubbish).
Freely, according to the motto:
Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.
Küste gegen Plastik e.V. has developed the Replace Plastic App to specifically forward consumer requests for alternatives to plastic products to the industry.
The BUND shopping guide "Microplastics – The invisible danger"
Code Check – an app that shows (questionable) nutrients and ingredients via barcode scan. A shopping guide for your pocket: https://codecheck-app.com/
such as those from Greenpeace help you keep track of what you're buying when you're out and about.
Become a water rescuer! Report rubbish. Organize a clean-up. Remove rubbish and recycle correctly.
Do good and talk about it! By mouse click.
The GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel has published a compact flyer on the subject of "Plastic waste in the sea – questions and answers", which can also be ordered there.
- Storage jars instead of plastic cans
- Shopping basket or bag instead of disposable plastic bag
- Sink brushes made of wood and natural fibres instead of plastic brushes
- Reusable glass instead of plastic for milk, yoghurt, juices, etc.
- Wooden or bamboo tableware instead of disposable plastic tableware
- TIP! Always have bags, pouches, nets at hand.
- Drinking straws made of stainless steel, glass, paper, bamboo instead of plastic straws
- Reusable bottles instead of disposable PET bottles
- Glass bottles and jars for ketchup, mustard, etc.
- Vegetable nets and bread bags instead of plastic bags
- Cotton buds made from paper and organic cotton
- Stainless-steel boxes and bottles for on the go instead of PET & Co.
- Buy vegetables and fruit unpacked
- Dispenser box instead of foil-wrapped tissue packs
- Consume tap water — use the bubble maker for carbonic acid lovers.
- Soap bars in a carton instead of liquid soap in a bag
- Buy recycled products (e.g., aluminium foil or dishwashing sponges) instead of the conventional products
- Toothbrushes made of wood or bamboo with bristles made from renewable raw materials instead of plastic
- Buy detergents, cleaning agents, washing-up liquids from organic manufacturers
- Bring your own “Coffee-to-Go” mug
- Avoid double and triple packed items
- Purchase cosmetics, drugstore items without microplastics
- Beeswax wipes instead of aluminium foil or cling film
- When buying clothes, look for non-synthetic products — micro(plastic) fibres enter the water cycle when washing!
- Newspaper and magazine subscriptions digital instead of print editions
- Household vinegar instead of fabric softener
- Washing soda instead of toilet cleaner
- Oil and toilet paper instead of wet wipes
- Have unpacked goods filled in your own containers
- Cloth diapers instead of disposable diapers
- Purchase clothing and items made from recycled marine litter
- e.g., www.bureo.co www.ecoalf.com www.karuneyewear.com www.woodlikeocean.com
- Acrylate Copolymer (AC)
- Acrylate Cross polymer (ACS)
- Poly acrylates (PA)
Even easier to recognize with this app https://www.beatthemicrobead.org/
- Polyethylene (PE)
- Polyethylene glycol (PEG)
- Polyethylene terephthalate (PET)
- Poly methyl meth acrylate (PMMA)
- Polypropylene (PP)
- Polypropylene Glycol (PPG)
- Polyquaternium (PQ)
- Polystyrene (PS)
- Polyurethane (PUR)