Ranger Kathryn's Arches

June 17, 2011

Got bags?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 5:27 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

A dishwasher device called bag-e-wash will help you use one bag 25-50 times. Or wash by hand like most of us do.

Last year a ranger housemate strung a line over the kitchen sink and used clothespins for drying every plastic bag he used and washed. This prompted me to give serious thought to how many I’ve thrown out in my lifetime, and I began to ponder the problem of over-packaging.

If you’ve shopped on any other continent, you bring your own bags and containers and refill them again and again. What is it about America that encourages disposable everything?!? Is convenience the be-all and end-all?

News flash: “Plastic Bag Makers Sue Reusable Bag Company for Loss of Sales.” I am not making this up. However, I sure am doing my part to limit and eventually end my use of throw-away bags. I’ll bet you didn’t know that those foil-lined paper bags containing Goldfish crackers can be refilled with your preferred mixture of pumpkin seeds, pretzels, craisins, soy nuts, and almonds… and can go in your backpack every day for a good week before starting to wear out.

My beef jerky re-closable bag? It’s being used again and again and again. I buy local jerky in bulk and keep it in the freezer and load a chunk each day for my lunch. I’ll let you know how long that one plastic bag lasts, but it is showing no signs of wear after THREE MONTHS.

See if you can get creative this week and prevent a few disposable items from hitting the trash can prematurely. We’re accustomed to thinking of bags as single-use throw-away containers; this mindset creates untold disposal woes. Leave a comment about ways you re-use items to cut down on what goes into the landfill.

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