There are a number of compelling reasons why Bermuda should use a refillable bottle or a reusable bag. To help convey these reasons, Greenrock has compiled a comprehensive list of FACTS. 

Each FACT on its own amounts to a good reason. But when you combine them, they make a very strong case for why Bermuda needs to start admitting to the realities of its consumptive behaviour and the impact this has both locally and globally.  

Like any BAD habit, Bermuda has the chance to change and become a model Global Citizen.  Please join Greenrock in helping achieve its goal of 'Changing the Mindset' in Bermuda when it comes to making sustainable lifestyle choices.

Horrible FACTS about Paper vs Plastic

1.  Plastic Bags consume 40% less energy to produce than paper bags, and

2.  Plastic Bags generate 80% less solid waste than paper bags

3.  As waste, Paper Bags produce 70 times more air pollutants than plastic bagsbyob_forgottenbutnotgone.png

4.  As waste, Paper Bags produce 50 times more water pollutants than plastic bags

5.  The majority of Kraft Paper (used for Paper Bags) is made by heating wood chips under pressure at high temperatures in a chemical solution.  As evidenced poison.jpgby the unmistakable stench commonly associated with paper mills, the use of these toxic chemicals contributes to both air pollution, such as acid rain, and water pollution.  Millions of gallons of these chemicals pour into waterways each year; the toxicity of the chemicals is long-term and settles into the sediments, working its way through the food chain.  Further toxicity is generated as both plastic and paper bags degrade.

6. It takes more than four times (4X) as much energy to manufacture a paper bag as it does to manufacture a plastic bag.

7. It takes 91% less energy to recycle a pound of plastic than it takes to recycle a pound of paper.  But recycling rates of either type of disposable bag are extremely low, with only 10 to 15% of paper bags and 1 to 3% of plastic bags being recycled, according to the Wall Street Journal.

plastic_turtle.jpg8. Plastic never fully decomposes.  Over time it goes through a process of photo degradation and breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces.  These substances cannot be converted by any known organisms and as such remain as plastic in landfills, rivers and oceans

9. In a 1998 survey of the North Pacific Ocean, 89% of waste observed was plastic products.  Sea turtles, whales and dolphins are among sea animals being directly affected by plastic waste products, often mistaking plastic bags for food, causing slow and painful deaths to these animals over a prolonged period of

10. International experience shows that the use of plastic bags can be substantially reduced in a very short period of time.  Introduction of alternative reusable bags has shown to be an effective means by which to reduce consumption of plastic bags.

GET MORE FACTS about Paper vs Plastic Bags

3 x Downloads 8.5 x 11 Posters to Email or Post
No Bag Please - Color BYOB Bag Poster
Paper vs Plastic - BYOB Bag Color Poster
Never Forgotten - Color BYOB Bag Poster

Greenrock's advice is as follows:

-  The Best Bag is one that can be used Over and Over

-  Bring your own Bag

-  Better for You, Better for Bermuda

Little-known FACTS about Plastic Bottles

byob_whatelseinbtl.png1.   It's never a good idea to reuse single-use plastic water bottles, as their design makes them difficult to clean and therefore prime breeding grounds for bacterial growth.

2.   The plastic used in both single-use and reusable bottles can pose more of a contamination threat than the water.  A safe plastic if used only once, #1 polyethylene terephthalate (PET or PETE) is the most common resin used in disposable bottles.  However, as #1 bottles are reused, which they commonly are, they can leach chemicals such as DEHA, as known carcinogen, and benzyl butlyl phthalate (BBP), a potential hormone disrupter

3.   Manufacturing plastic resins creates more toxic emissions than manufacturing glass - for example, producing a 16 oz PET bottle generates more than 100 x the toxic emissions to air and water than making the same size bottle out of glass

4.   But some refillable bottles can also pose problems.  Certain varieties of the popular, colorful water bottles are made from Lexan, a polycarbonate plastic hazardous_materials.jpg(usually indicated by #7 in the recycling triangle) known to leach low levels of bisphenol A (BPA), a suspected hormone disruptor.  Because BPA leaching can increase as your bottle ages, it's prudent to set some limits on reuse. 

5.   If you are partial to brightly colored containers, ther are other plastic bottles that are made from safer alternatives such as #2 high density polyethylene (HDPE).  Click here to read more on GreenGuide to Plastic Bottles and Picnicware

6.   In 2006, Americans spent nearly $11 billion on over 8 billion gallons of bottled water, and then tossed overbottledwater.jpg 22 billion empty plastic bottles in the trash.  In bottle production alone, the more than 70 million bottles of water consumed each day in the U.S. drain 1.5 millon barrels of oil over the course of one year.

7.   Not only does bottled water contribute to excessive waste, but it costs us a thousand times more than it would cost to maintain a supply of water in your home and is, in most cases, no safer or cleaner.

8.   Even restauranteurs are doing their part to keep water bottles out of landfills.  Upscale eateries in Boston, New York, and San Francisco have taken bottled water off the menu, offering filtered tap water instead. At the Italian restaurant Incanto in San Francisco, carafes used to serve filtered tap water are refilled 2,000 x on average before they're cracked and retired.  Owner Mark Pastore explains that leaving bottled water off the menu is "a tiny thing that we can do to be a little more sustainable".

GET MORE FACTS - about Plastic Bottles

3 x Downloads 8.5 x 11 to Posters Email or Post
Cowboy Teach Us - Color BYOB Bottle Poster
Immediate Savings - Color BYOB Bottle Poster
What Else is in Bottle - Color BYOB Bottle Poster

Greenrock's Advice is as follows:

- Buy a safe, refillable Bottle
- Fill it up
- Bring your own Bottle
- Better for you, Better for Bermuda

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