Environment · General Life

One Small Trick to Help the Planet

If you’ve ever been around a modern human settlement on a windy day, you’ve probably seen trash blowing around in the breeze. More than likely, most of it was made of plastic.

Plastic is a ubiquitous and villainized substance in the modern world. Read any article about our current ecological disasters and plastic will almost certainly be mentioned. There are biodegradable or reusable alternatives available. However, they cost more, and are not as good at retaining the freshness of packaged foods. As a result, these substitutes are not widely used, and plastic waste abounds. It frequently ends up in the ocean, killing wildlife.

There are creative ways to reuse plastic shopping bags–for example, by turning them into “plarn” to knit or crochet with. But what about food wrappers? Or crisp packets? You can craft with those as well. But if you’re not feeling crafty, or just don’t fancy carrying a bunch of wrappers around, there is still a way that you can prevent plastic from flying everywhere on a windy day. It takes about 30-seconds, and is easier than tying a shoe: turn your wrappers into knots before tossing them in the bin.

It’s a very simple process. First, take your wrapper, and fold it along its longest side to make a thin strip:

A Trek protein bar wrapper.
These are easy to work with. Also a very tasty snack.
The same wrapper, folded three times along its long side so its been made into a long strip.

Next, fold the wrapper approximately in half, crossing the ends over each other so there is a “loop” in the middle.

The wrapper ends are crossed over each other, creating a loop at the back.

Finally, tuck one end through the loop, then gently pull the ends in opposite directions to tighten the knot. Et, voila! Something that is much less aerodynamic, and so will be less likely to fly away in the breeze:

The wrapper, tied in a knot
Yes, I literally just tried to write out directions for tying a knot. Why? I don’t know. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

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