Something rather different here. I am doing a little experiment.
A week trying to generate the least amount of long lived rubbish by not buying non renewable things. My rules are:
- Focus only on things I buy or consume directly.
- From Monday 20/05 till Sunday 26/05 evening.
- Document what I do buy and questions that arise from this experiment.
Day 1: Monday
Commuting by train and tube: I have a card that I can top up so no train receipt. but makes me wonder if those train tickets are recyclable or biodegradable.
I love tea, generally I brew my own leaf tea, however in the office there is tea and I had a cup nearly without thinking. It was a Twinnings Individually Wrapped Tea (no recyclable marking so I have to assume that the wrappers are non recyclable) What are these wrappers made of? I asked them a question on twitter while Iwait, I checked online and it seems that not only the wrapping might not be cool, it seems like the tea bag itself contains plastic source from 2018.
Update: Twinnings replied
Hi Andrea, thanks for getting in touch. Our envelopes are not currently recyclable, however rest assured that the environmental sustainability of our products & our packaging is really important to us & we are working with our suppliers on ways of improving this.— Twinings Tea (@TwiningsTeaUK) May 21, 2019
By the way, I use the mugs in the office and I don’t generally drink take away tea nor coffee.
Sugar sachets, are they recyclable? biodegradable? I erred on the side of caution and didn’t use sugar.
I generally prefer salads for lunch. However most salads come in a plastic container :(… Initially I went to a place recommended by a colleague at the office, he mentioned this place was environmentally conscious. On getting there , it had closed down.
So I went to
Pret A Manger, first I saw a hot wrap, it looked like the packaging was cardboard, but it was not marked as recyclable and when I asked the cashier, he didn’t know if it was ( I was there at lunch time so they were busy), so I got a toasted sandwich, the container was marked as recyclable.
Also, in the spirit of research and learning I emailed TossedUK about being able to use my own container and they replied saying yes :D. I just need to present my container before they start packing it! (A++) Makes you wonder if most places would be OK with this?
Dinner was food cooked with item that were already at home, so nothing to report there.
Long lived Rubbish so far
- tea wrapper
Conclusion so far
I am pretty happy with how little rubbish I was able to generate just by making my choices based solely on this factor. Another interesting side effect is discussing this with people you chat with during the day. People were keen to help and provide options and ideas. We were all surprised by how much we didn’t know about recycling.
List of Questions
Will update with links if/when I get answers
- Is it ok to bring your own container to places that sell lunch to take away? I asked TossedUk and they said yes (maybe other places are cool with it too)?
- what is the best thing to do with long lived rubbish (such as my tea wrapper from today)?
Are the following items recyclable or biodegradable:
- Train and tube tickets
- Tea wrapper
- Tea bag
- Sugar sachets
- Certain types of food packaging
- Individually wrapped tea, it looks like the wrappers are not recyclable, and the tea bags have plastic.
- Severely reduced lunch options. Most of the take away options come in some form of plastic, in the end a hot wrap wrapped in paper from Pret did the trick but at the cost of changing my diet.
- I emailed TossedUK about being able to use my own container and they said yes (meaning I need to carry my container with me, which is fine).