Marie Claire Dimech Debono
8 easy ways to reduce plastic use when on a sailing day
Climate change is no longer a far-off problem; it is happening here, it is happening right now – Barack Obama.
These words show the urgency and the need to take action. We are living in an era where we consume so much plastic that politicians have to think of strategies that would ban us from buying one time plastics. No matter how conscious and aware one is, sometimes it is unavoidable to buy plastic. We have to find ways of protecting our oceans.
When living on a sailing boat, or hiring a sailing boat for a charter, one has to already minimise on stuff that is kept on board since space is so limited. Garbage is one main issue that you undoubtedly have to face everyday. Here are a few tips you can use to reduce the amount of garbage and increase space for those more important things.
8 easy ways to reduce plastic use when on a sailing day:
1. Ditch single use plastic
This causes nothing but garbage, and it is not even that convenient. We even try to make it a point to inform clients that we have cutlery and a fully equipped kitchen so that clients will not see the need to bring on board any disposable plastics.
2. Buying in bulk and storing in containers
When buying in bulk you are automatically using less plastic, storing it in your own containers. Not many shops offer buying in bulk but we try to go to the ones that do. It is also a good way to get rid of those opened packets of pasta that will go bad or spill around in your cupboards.
3. Use of cloth bags and backpacks
This is so practical and comfortable, not just for consuming less plastic but even for carrying. Whenever we go shopping, we always take backpacks and other cloth bags to carry our stuff.
4. DIY Cleaning, detergents, cosmetics etc.
Thanks to the internet, we now have no excuses of not having recipes to do things. Your DIY recipes are just a click away! We make most of the inexpensive, natural, biodegradable products instead of buying the more expensive and unhealthy products at supermarkets. Just the thought of using products that will then flush out in the sea and do harm saddens me. Therefore, every chance we get, we try to make our own out of natural products.
5. Get rid of those straws!
Who needs a straw anyway? We grow up learning how to drink without a straw, so why do we need a straw now? I know, it is pretty much everywhere so it’s not easy to avoid. Now-a-days we almost never think of the purpose for straws, their purpose is such an invented one.
6. Use matches instead of lighters
Go back to those retro matches you used to use before. All the plastic that is used to create lighters can so easily be avoided by using matches (it is also a bit more fun when lighting up matches). We are no longer buying lighters on board and we actually like it.
7. When packing your food, use containers and not stretch and sea
We only have a few containers to store away our food or to take a packed lunch but we find them so practical, food doesn’t get smashed, remains more fresh and we consume less plastic. Genius!
8. Pick up the plastic while swimming and while sailing
Lastly, whenever we are out sailing and it is possible, we collect plastic from the sea. Whether we are alone or with clients, if it is possible, we always try to collect garbage that we come across. We keep a small net handy so in such events, we quickly maneuver the boat so we can collect that object we saw floating. We have noticed that when we did this with clients on board, the clients liked it and got into it themselves, some of them even tried catching the objects themselves.
Never under estimate the ability of one human being, if one person acts and influences one other person, you’ve got an impact right there that will surely make a difference. We cannot put this off any longer, act now before it is too late.