A recent surge in mainstream awareness over the pollution caused by single-use plastics has led to a decline in sales of plastic drinks bottles. Also when you look up zero waste, you’re bound to notice tons and tons of pictures of glass jars everywhere. They are also firm as best vegan gifts. If is really the best sustainable option? Let’s find out together!
Glass vs. Plastic
There are several reasons why glass is viewed as more sustainable than plastic. For starters, it’s far more durable and can last for many more years, making it a good choice for those looking for a reusable container for their liquids. It can also be quickly and easily cleaned and sterilised in boiling water, enhancing its reusable properties.
Glass does not contain any of the potentially harmful chemicals which some plastic bottles do. Many single-use plastic bottles still contain BPA, which is believed to be responsible for the disruption of natural hormones in the body. Finally, glass lends itself well to recycling, further boosting its environmental credentials. Seems too perfect?
Glass – 3 main issues
Making new glass requires sand. While we have tons of sand on deserts and under the ocean, but we’re using it faster than the planet can replenish it.
Glass is heavier than plastic and breaks much easier during transit. This means it produces more emissions in transportation than plastic and costs more to transport.
Another thing to consider is most glass isn’t actually recycled. In fact, only 33 per cent of waste glass is recycled in America. When you consider 10 million metric tons of glass is disposed of every year in America, that’s not a very high recycling rate.
Plastic – 3 main issues
The biggest problems with single-use plastics come when bottles are thrown into landfill or, worse, the ocean, and biodegrade into highly damaging microplastics. These tiny substances endure in the atmosphere for many years and can disrupt ecosystems and infiltrate food chains, having potentially huge ramifications even for humans.
Big carbon footprint! From the moment raw materials are made into the plastic to their disposal, plastic emits carbon dioxide. In fact, the emissions from plastic in 2015 were equivalent to nearly 1.8 billion metric tons of CO2.
Last but not least: only 9 per cent of plastic is actually recycled. Considering we’ve made 8.5 billion metric tons of it since large scale production began, that’s a very small recycle rate.
Glass and plastic both have their pros and cons
What’s the solution? The best thing we can do is reduce our reliance on anything single-use! If you use it once and then place it in the recycling bin, try to find another solution. For example, we in Naturaty are in the relationship with Reusable Organic Bag and Stainless steel Bottle.
Also, our team prefer to use Solid Deodorant and Solid Carbon Toothpaste, to prevent by using plastic. All those things you can find in our Zero Waste Box, perfect as zero waste and 100 % vegan gift. We are aware that there are exceptions, and there’s no way we’re going to completely eradicate single-use, but we can definitely make a HUGE dent in it by being a little more conscious with our purchases.
PS don’t forget to reuse your glass jars!