If I could snap my fingers and change one thing about the world I would make single-use plastic shopping bags disappear. Although this would have very little impact on the day-to-day life of most humans, it would have a profound impact on the hundreds of thousands of marine birds and animals that die from ingesting plastic bags, and greatly reduce the litter in our landscapes, waterways and streets. In Australia alone, more than 10 million single-use plastic bags are used and discarded every day (only three per cent are recycled). They take between 10 and 2000 years to break down.
If plastic bags weren’t available, we wouldn’t use them. After all, we survived most of our 200,000 years of existence without them! But in today’s modern, hectic world, convenience is king and we’re just a bit hooked on stuff we use once and then throw away. We all know single-use bags are a waste of money and resources, the trick is getting back into the good habit of actually using (not just owning!) reusable shopping bags. Here are eight suggestions to make it easier for you to be a tote-carrying eco-champion: