First of all, what is Plastic Free July?

It’s a concept that started in Perth and it’s a movement to encourage people to re-think their use of single-use, disposable plastic.

Why does it matter?

Here are a few tidbits I gleaned from the Plastic Free July website:

  • Plastics are designed to break up, not break down. They are permanent pollution.
  • They end up in waterways and oceans – scientists predict by 2050 there will be more tonnes of plastic than tonnes of fish. Frightening!
  • Plastics increase our impact on the environment with plastic manufacturing consuming 6% of the world’s fossil fuels.
  • Plastic never goes away and in the first 10 years of this century, there was more plastic produced than throughout the 1900s.

Some people argue that many single use plastics can be recycled so they are ‘ok’. This is a bit of a fallacy. Sure, some plastic can be recycled but it is generally ‘downcycled’ (so made into low-grade product for just one more use) – think about the energy inputs to initially create and transport then recycle, transport and then dispose of this.

You know that slogan ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’? It’s not a coincidence the words are in that order. This is the most effective approach to decision making about use of materials that have a negative impact on the environment.

The best choice is to choose to REDUCE your use. Saying no to plastic bags and straws. BYO drink bottle and coffee cup.

The next best choice is to REUSE where possible. If you ended up in a position where you had no alternative but plastic or other less desirable material choice, look to reuse it as many times as possible.

And the least desirable choice (but still better than landfill) is to RECYCLE. So if you do have to use plastic, make sure it’s a recyclable type.

At CreativeIQ we believe that there is no point working to create more vibrant and economically sustainable communities if, at the same time, we are not making the choice to minimise the impact we have on the environment. Great facilities and capable people mean little if we degrade the place where we live.

On an individual basis, we aim to model sustainable choices, both professionally and personally. Some of the choices we make at CreativeIQ include:

  • minimising the need for travel where video conference provides a comparable solution;
  • maintaining a ‘paperless environment’ as much as possible;
  • primarily using digital marketing materials to avoid the impact of print materials;
  • home office with solar panels to minimise reliance on non-renewable power source;
  • minimising the purchase of excessively packaged products and saying no to plastic bags;
  • recycling ink cartridges; and
  • modelling using a reusable cup, rather than single use, when meeting clients for coffee.

If you’re interested in finding out more about Plastic Free July, check out their website and register to say you’re on board with looking for ways to reduce your impact on the environment.

You can also read more about preparing for Plastic Free July (and being more sustainable in your choices all the time) in our other post about Plastic Bag Alternatives.

Anna heads up the amazing team at CreativeIQ. Most brand and business consultants are either very creative or excel at strategy and analysis. What makes Anna special is her ability to do both! That’s how CreativeIQ was born. She loves strategy and finding creative ways to solve problems.

Click here to find out more about our team.