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This blog had to take a break as I had to, had to, had to write the previous one of my #ClimateChangeProtest.

As my plastic-free month comes to an end, what have I learnt from these past 30 days? Well 45 days and counting!

First of all, plastic is ubiquitous. There is no way I can be entirely plastic-free even if I wanted to. And there is no need to have this ginormous challenge and set myself up to fail. I learnt that PDQ.

We also need to do things at both the micro and macro level. It can be extremely disheartening, discouraging and easy to say, “how can I as a single person effect change?” And give up. But that can be a non-starter. We all as individuals and as a society need to be pro-active to make changes.

Be the change

As Osho says, the society is nothing but just a bunch of individuals. If Greta Thunberg had not started to sit outside the Swedish parliament all on her own, just a year ago, there would not have been climate activism amongst school children the world over. They were recently protesting outside the White House in the USA and taking their protests to the UN too. We all have to start somewhere. And I have learnt that the best place to start is with oneself. 

So okay, while this is my very last #plastic-free blog piece, I promise!, I will continue to make small changes in my daily life. Reduce the use of single-use plastic and switch to more sustainable ways of living. And as part of that, it looks like I am one of the vanguard! Because this is what I read just today. #PlasticPromise!

Of course I cannot give up all plastic, much to my chagrin, as it is so ubiquitous. But this month has made me realise just how much plastic we consume. Do I need that new pair of jeans which when I order will come wrapped up in a plastic bag? Or do I need to buy that bag of lentils all wrapped up in a – plastic bag? Or can I buy it loose? And this realisation is revealing in that just this awareness will help me make changes. Here more and more shops and supermarkets are going back to offering loose dry goods. One can go in with one’s own container or carry things back in paper bags. While in India more and more people are wrapping everything in plastic!

The plastic list

So as my plastic list on my kitchen board grows longer with each passing day as I realise the presence of more and more plastic in my life, items on it are also slowly being crossed off. I now have begun to cross off small items from that list to my immense satisfaction!

So who amongst you has already joined me on this journey? Or will you start – because my journey now is unstoppable! So let us one plastic bag by one plastic bag try and eliminate plastic from our lives! Here’s to #PlasticPromise!

2 Comments

  • Avatar Savita says:

    At last, a moment to share my concern with plastic, Shruti.

    I had simultaneously started a blog on the same subject. Isn’t it fascinating how 15 years ago we were all freaking out about paper? How can I use less paper? How can I avoid having all these trees being chopped down just so I can read one rubbishy leaflet thrust through my door after another?

    Now, since watching David Attenborough’s The Blue Planet, everywhere I turn there’s plastic. Right now, my keyboard, my mouse, the frame of my Mac….
    And I deliberately chose to go the way of plastic around the same time as being concerned about paper because of my disabilities and it being so much lighter to move around and carry.

    And you’re right about India, for so long recycling-conscious, suddenly a pill I’ve been taking regularly for 20 years from a little glass jar is now coming from a plastic one. My face cream, from glass to plastic… all just when the whole thing should be going in reverse!
    I keep telling myself that the important thing is not to throw it away!

    India has made strides though. It has banned the flimsy plastic bags for shopping and it is now illegal to serve them in shops. Everyone carries a little jute shopping bag with them. But the awareness is not really there. So many other problems to concern itself with!

    So keep up with your plastic awareness gig!

    • Shruti Shruti says:

      Thanks Savita. The problem needs to be addressed at both micro and macro levels. I am in essence not for throwing all plastic out. Like the baby and bath water syndrome. However all single use plastic, not just bags need to be morphed into something more sustainable.
      Hope somebody out there is listening!

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