What are we doing about it?

Our main goal is to work with local businesses, schools, and other organisations to remove, as far as possible, the following items from St Albans. We have chosen these particular items because they are so rarely recycled, and so form such a large part of our plastic waste and litter.

  • Plastic straws and stirrers – we want to continue to build on the work on the work already done by the St Albans and Harpenden Refuse the Straw projects, encouraging customers to politely decline plastic straws, and for local businesses to provide an eco friendly alternative when required.
  • Plastic water bottles – globally, a million plastic water bottles are bought every minute. In a country with such great quality tap water, there are very few excuses for using bottled water.
  • Balloons – these are not usually made of plastic, but are another single use product which is particularly damaging to the environment. Despite the “biodegradable” label, they take several years to break down, by which time the damage is done. Balloons are litter in the sky, much of it reaching our countryside and beaches where it can harm animals. Read more at the excellent Balloons Blow website.

We’re not stopping there though! We will be working on other projects too, and will update this site as they develop. Two that we have recently started are as follows:

  • Refill – we are partnering with Affinity Water, St Albans City & District Council, and St Albans BID to promote the St Albans Refill scheme, which asks businesses to provide free water bottle refills to anyone who asks, free of charge
  • Plastic Free St Albans Map – we are seeing so many other examples of businesses moving towards becoming plastic free. Compostable coffee cups, discounts for bringing reusables, plastic free packaging, recycling, we want to encourage it all! We are maintaining an interactive map of all of the positive actions we hear about. Please contact us if you know of others.

Finally, as part of our plastic free journey, we hope to gain a Plastic Free Community award from environmental charity Surfers Against Sewage. You can find out more about them, and our progress towards that goal here.