Five ways we’re reducing plastic and how you can too

We are rightfully reminded on a daily basis just how bad plastic is for the planet. The Guardian recently published an article detailing how single-use plastic bottles make up 14% of the plastic in U.K waterways.

It’s not only filling up landfills and taking over the ocean, but it is now becoming a huge concern to the lives of many creatures and animals – especially those that live in the ocean.

‘Plastics will probably outlast humanity itself.’ (Forbes. 2018, 5 Ways that plastics harm the environment.)

It is necessary for us to be aware of the damage, but equally, we should be shouting – just as much- about ways we can reduce our plastic waste. On that note, we thought we would put together our five top tips that could help you and your business reduce your plastic waste.

  1. Hand out reusable coffee cups to staff and clients. This has been our biggest step towards reducing our plastic waste. It not only promotes the business (they can be branded), but this step has completely eradicated single-use coffee cups at Athene Communications, which is a huge achievement!
  2. Have shared tea, coffee, milk, sugar and all the other essentials in a communal space with kettles, cold-water dispensers, mugs, spoons, glasses etc.
    This means no more:
    1. Unnecessary wastage with multiple bottles of milk/bags of sugar
    2. Buying endless single-use bottles of water
  3. Encourage the use of Tupperware with #TupperwareTuesday & have cooking appliances to heat up homemade food or cook from fresh. At Athene we arrange ‘Lunch and Learn’ sessions, where the team bring their own food and eat together whilst learning about a colleague’s recent achievements, learning new skills or even recently partaking in a meditative mindfulness session. We also encourage those who are buying hot food nearby, to take their Tupperware instead of the plastic/polystyrene/ bags that are provided. This means less:
    1. Packaging by supplementing food takeaway packaging with Tupperware (similar to what some big retailers have started to do by encouraging the purchase of loose fruit & veg, rather than pre packed in plastic)
    2. Need to buy pre-made and packaged food
  4. Hand out awards to those who are making positive changes! At Athene we have an apple & lemon award initiative (apple for someone who does something good for the environment, lemon for someone who does something bad e.g. unnecessary printing)
    This means we can:
    1. Educate and inspire others to come up with new innovative ways to reduce waste
    2. Reward those who are making an effort to change
    3. Have fun whilst doing our bit
  5. Have a team day out helping clear up rubbish. You can make it a team building exercise and have competitions and challenges to make it enjoyable! This can not only be a fun day out for the company but benefits the environment. Click here to find out more about what we do.

We also have future plans to go further with our plastic reduction, including making Ecobricks – which means the single use plastic we do create, can be put to good use and make furniture, walls and even build homes that can withstand an earthquake! You can use plastic bags, crisp packets and more to make an Ecobrick.

We hope these ideas can be useful and please do get in touch if you have any other ideas you would like to share, we always look forward to hearing new initiatives that can help to make Athene even greener!