Plastic bags are one of the biggest perpetrators of environmental harm. Every year, 380 billion (with a “b”) are consumed in the United States alone. Global estimates put the number of plastic bags used every year at almost a trillion bags. In other words, approximately one million plastic bags are being used and thrown away every minute.
The damage to the environment is colossal. For one, they’re not biodegradable. They never break down. They just sit there. They take up space and leech harmful chemicals. If they make their way into wildlife or marine life, they’ll often choke animals. Turtles, for instance, can mistake plastic bags for jellyfish. They try to eat them, then die when the plastic bags expand in their stomach.
Long story short:
“Throwing away plastic bags is bad and contributes to a massive global problem.”
Recycling is better, but still not the ideal option. Recycling uses a lot of energy and also produces harmful chemical residues in and of itself. Instead, reusing your plastic bags is perhaps the #1 way to help the environment – while saving money.
Here are a few ways you can reuse your plastic bag.
Use It as a Trash Bag
This way, you don’t have to buy garbage bags. You can even keep reusing each bag until it tears. Alternatively, you can just use each bag once and throw it out. Chances are, you’ll never run out of trash bags.
Doggy Poop Bags
Instead of buying doggy poop bags or using zip lock bags, just use your plastic bags.
Save up your plastic bags. If you accumulate a lot of bags, this is a fantastic way to put them to use.
Use It to Collect Leaves
Do you use leaf bags to help manage your garden? Instead of using other bags, why not just use your existing plastic bags instead?
As a Food Storage Tool
If you should ever need to store something messy like spices or flour, you can easily just store it in a plastic bag and twist the top to close.
Tear It Up for Packaging
Shred up your used plastic bags and use them for packaging. Instead of using newspaper or buying bubble wrap, just collect your old plastic bags and crumple them up.
As you can tell, there are a lot of ways to put old plastic bags to use. Of course, the best environmental course is to use your own bags whenever possible. If you do build up plastic bags, however, don’t throw them away – reuse them instead. Now you know how.
Image by: Pixabay