Avoid Disposable Items

Avoid Disposable Items

Disposable items such as plastic bags, plastic cutlery and batteries are thrown away after a single use. This is a waste of resources and creates unnecessary wastage. We should try to avoid buying and using disposable items if possible.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) to Reduce the Use of Plastic Bags
  2. Avoid Disposable Plastic Containers and Cutlery
  3. Avoid Using Individually Packaged Disposable Items
  4. Use Rechargeable Batteries Instead of Normal Single-Use Batteries
  5. Skip Gift Wrapping

1. Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) to Reduce the Use of Plastic Bags

In Singapore, we use about 3 billion plastic bags a year. Plastic bags are commonly used to bag our waste for disposal. However, excess plastic bags are thrown away as waste and are also often thrown away as litter, dirtying our streets and clogging up the drains.

Plastic bags that end up in the sea may also pose a threat to marine lives. In addition, plastic bags are made from oil, thus using up this non-renewable resource.

Support the Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) campaign and bring your own reusable bags for shopping and help to reduce the need for excessive plastic bags. Avoid taking excessive plastic bags and if you have excess plastic bags, consider reusing them for bagging refuse or giving them to others.

2. Avoid Disposable Plastic Containers and Cutlery

Make an effort to have your food at the food outlets or restaurants, and avoid takeaways using disposable plastic containers. If you often need to buy food back to your home or office, consider bringing your own reusable container, cutlery and bag instead of taking the disposable ones.

In addition, you can bring your own reusable cutlery to avoid using disposable cutlery when eating at food outlets and restaurants.

If you are organising an event, use non-disposable plates, cups and cutlery for your catered food. Ask the caterer to use chinaware or glassware instead. This helps to reduce the amount of waste from paper or plastic disposables.

3. Avoid Using Individually Packaged Disposable Items

When serving hot beverages, avoid the use of disposable stirrers and individually packaged sugar, milk and creamer. Use a spoon for stirring and place the sugar and milk in reusable containers or jugs.

Avoid using individual sachets of chilli or ketchup sauce. Store the sauce in reusable bottles and dispensers instead.

Avoid disposable bottled water or plastic cups in your office or event. You can switch to reusable water bottles and reusable plastic, ceramic or glass cups for water.

4. Use Rechargeable Batteries Instead of Normal Single-Use Batteries

Rechargeable AA and AAA batteries can be reused many times and this will help to reduce the disposal of normal single-use batteries. If 5% of the local population switched to rechargeable batteries, this would prevent the annual disposal of more one million single-use batteries (assuming each person throws away five batteries a year).

Switching to rechargeable batteries also helps to save money. A pack of four AA alkaline batteries costs about $5 and can be used once, whereas a pack of four rechargeable batteries and a charger costs about $50, and the batteries can be reused about 500 to 1,000 times. If you switch to rechargeable batteries and reuse them 10 times, the purchase cost between normal and rechargeable batteries would breakeven.

5. Skip Gift Wrapping

Consider skipping gift wrapping and put the gift in a reusable bag instead. Excessive paper wrappers are a hassle and usually end up as waste. What is inside is more important.


    Posted July 4, 2012 11:52 pm 0Likes

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  • byArletha
    Posted November 20, 2015 2:45 am 0Likes

    It has taken decades of public awareness programmes and educational literature to make people start to take responsibility
    for the environmental disasters that have been caused by lack of
    waste management and recycling. Here is a
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    of the electronic waste.

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  • bykeerthi
    Posted November 25, 2015 3:37 pm 0Likes

    The best alternate to plastic disposable items is PALM LEAF TABLEWARE. this product is bio degradable and compostable. it will take maximum 60 days to degrade.no trees are harmed for manufacturing these products. plates and bowls are made from the fallen palm leafs and heat pressed. 100% natural and chemical free. If you are interested please mail back us fro more details and images of the products. mail id- sales@globaljunction.co.in

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  • bysharon
    Posted July 16, 2018 4:49 pm 0Likes

    This article published in 2008 to educate people on reducing waste. 10 years later, we are literally swimming in trash and plastics. I’ve seen/known people who have abused the convenience of disposable plastics. Cutlery and packaging that served it’s purpose for a meal, end up in the ocean, threatening marine life and killing our ecosystem. The fish eats the plastics, we eat the fish. This is a vicious cycle, and a poisonous one.

    Plastics do not decompose or incinerate like paper. The plastics you toss into the trash takes 400 years to breakdown on average. The “bio-degradable” options do not breakdown 100% as well, most of them end up floating in the ocean. The damage is obvious now and major cities and restaurants are starting to cut down usage of disposables. By changing our habits, we can save the ocean and in return, save ourselves. Bring a reusable container, mug or cutlery. It’s not really that hard.

    For the next 10 years, we should see a clean ocean, not one filled with plastic fishes.

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