9 inspiring ways you can support Earth Day 22 April 2018

April 19, 2018

9 inspiring ways you can support Earth Day 22 April 2018

Earth Day is our chance to remind each other how precious our planet is, and how every single one of us can help save it. 

It’s true - we can all contribute to harmony between nature and the earth. By learning about the problems and solutions, and then changing the way we produce and consume. We can create a balance that will help the earth recover and regain strength to support all living things that need it.

The theme for this year is to end plastic pollution. Here are some inspiring and accessible ways you can make a difference in your daily life, in your community, for our one and only mother earth. 

  1. Learn about the issue: As Mandela said – “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can change the world.” Learning about plastic pollution and ways to tackle it is easy with Earth Day’s resource pack, including bitesize facts and links for more reading and watching - like What really happens to the plastic you throw away.


  1. Write to your MP: It’s not old fashioned – it works. Your opinions about why plastic pollution matters and how our Aotearoa can tackle it matter. It's easy to get started with these tips for writing letters and emails to MPs


  1. Reduce –
  • Food packaging – Most single-use food packaging can’t be recycled because it’s such low quality. So DIY instead with long-life lunch boxes and beeswax wraps. If you buy your food out, simply take a lunch box with you and ask staff to use it rather than throwaway alternatives. Be proud about the statement you’re making (it could inspire others to do the same!).
  • Clothes – Choose natural fabrics like cotton, wool, merino, linen and hemp. Avoid synthetic, plastic-based materials like nylon, polyester, lycra and acrylic which take 20-200 years to break down.
  • Homewares – Choose natural materials like wood, ceramic, metal and glass for kitchen, bathroom and living room products. Bamboo, cork and hemp are great lightweight options.


  1. Refuse –
  • Straws – do you really need one? Our oceans don't. When ordering drinks ask staff not to give you straws. If you do need one, get a long-life metal/wood/paper straw (we love Haaka Stainless Steel Straws) and bring that with you.
  • Plastic bags – use your arms or a fabric bag to carry your shopping. It's easy to make your own, or check out Boomerang Bags and small Green Collective Loot Bags for pulses, grains, fruit and veggies.
  • Packaging – avoid it at source! Choose loose fruit and veg, bulk stores for spices, grains and pulses (such as Bin Inn, Moshims, Commonsense Organics, Moore Wilsons, Mediterranean Warehouse, Silk Route, Nut Store, V1 vegan store), and biodegradable packaging such as Ethique toiletries in compostables boxes and EcoStore cleaning products in biodegradable sugarcane.


  1. Reuse –
  • Old containers – food jars can be reused as glasses, vases, storage containers, for home-made toiletries/cleaning products and on the go for snacks/lunches. See Pinterest for more inspiration.
  • Spare wood – get the tool kit out and go wild making plastic-free bookcases, storage boxes, tables, chairs and more.
  • Pre-loved – when you need something new, hit up the op shops, TradeMe and other local second-hand platforms like Freecycle. You’ll reduce demand on new plastic production, divert waste from landfill, and likely snap up a unique bargain.


  1. Recycle –


  1. Remove –


  1. Measure your plastic consumption - so you can celebrate the progress you make reducing it! Try Earth Day's online calculator.


  1. Sign the plastic-bag free NZ petition: Over 58,000 people have, so get involved to help push the legislation over the line and save our seas. Your voice counts! 

Also in Ask an expert

Hygrometer - what do the numbers mean?
Hygrometer - what do the numbers mean?

July 26, 2018

Our newest EcoShop product is the Hygrometer, a handy tool that allows you to record and read temperature and humidity levels in your home. But what do the numbers actually mean when it comes to keeping a healthy home? We break it down for you here.

Continue Reading

Plastic Free July: let them eat cake!
Plastic Free July: let them eat cake!

July 25, 2018

Here's a home tip about starting a positive culture…making, eating and sharing CAKE. While also reducing your plastic use. It helps to be positive, rather than just focusing on the problem. Read more from our expert Vishal.

Continue Reading

Plastic free July: making your pantry plastic-free
Plastic free July: making your pantry plastic-free

July 17, 2018

Using glass jars to store food in your kitchen, instead of plastic, is a great Plastic-Free July idea. Read more from our expert Marion.

Continue Reading

Sign up for our newsletter

Get Sustainability Trust's news, events and specials straight to your inbox every month