Contrary to popular belief the solution is not recycling – while important and certainly commendable, only 9% of all plastics ever made have been recycled. Furthermore, recycled plastics often go into unrecyclable products such as clothes and carpets, and most importantly recycling and its associated infrastructure does not disincentivise the production of plastic, which is the real problem.
The solution is to reduce, refuse and rethink our use of single-use plastics. As an individual this is as simple as choosing alternate products and changing your behaviour – use a reusable cup for your coffee, use wooden toothbrushes and hairbrushes, use reusable bags for your shopping and other alternatives which can be found here. While everyone should be encouraged to rethink their use of plastic, governments are best placed to affect lasting change, and thankfully there have been recent developments on this front. The European Parliament’s environment committee recently voted to strengthen the European Commission’s overall plans to cut plastic pollution, banning microplastics in cosmetics, personal care, detergents and cleaning products, as well as oxo-degradable plastics by 2020.
At Considerate Hoteliers we take the issue of plastic use seriously. The team has developed tailored services to replace all plastic items in a hotel’s operation. This includes an initial supply chain and property audit, to identify all plastic items found in each department of a hotel. Once all plastic items have been identified, Considerate Hoteliers researches solutions to replace all single-use plastic with items from local suppliers (if possible). Get in touch to learn more about our ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’ solutions.