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How will you reduce single-use plastic?

Members of the Plastic Impact Alliance collected written pledges from attendees of the 2020 Outdoor Retailer Snow Show.

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Word cloud featuring \
Making a dent in single-use plastic will require a million little baby steps.Courtesy

The anti-plastic warriors were out in force at last week’s Outdoor Retailer Snow Show. Exhibiting members of the Plastic Impact Alliance, a coalition of more than 350 outdoor companies working to eliminate the industry’s dependence on single-use plastic, displayed PIA signage at their booths, hosted water stations, held plastic-free booth events, and touted their brands’ sustainability goals and achievements.

At The Voice booth, we wanted to highlight some of the admirable steps our community is making in their daily lives to eliminate single-use plastic. So we created a pledge board and asked visitors to write their personal plastic pledges for 2020 on paper leaves, which we pinned to a tree. 

a cork board with paper leaves pinned to it and a backdrop that reads The Voice: Independent, Unfiltered, Engaged.
Show-goers pinned their plastic pledges for 2020 to a cork board at The Voice booth.Kristin Hostetter

What started out as a fun exercise, quickly turned into a wonderful learning experience, with hundreds of show-goers stopping by to talk about plastic waste and how we can all make a difference in our daily lives. 

We compiled the answers into a word cloud (above) to track the most-used phrases; no surprise, the biggest culprits in day-to-day waste production, according to our research, are disposable coffee cups, single-use grocery bags, and plastic water bottles. Every response was great, but in the end a clear winner emerged—short, sweet, and simple:

What are you doing to curb your plastic habit?

The Plastic Impact Alliance has a simple (but big) goal to eradicate single-use plastic from our industry. We all know it will take time to actually get there, but in the meantime, there’s a lot of small things we can all do in our daily lives to  turn the ship.

We are all faced with a million little choices every day that involve plastic. At the grocery store, will you buy loose carrots or bagged ones? Will you buy milk in a plastic bottle or the pricier glass ones? Will you order take-out or choose to eat in or cook yourself. No matter where you are on your plastic journey, know that every little choice you make to reject single-use plastic and opt for a sustainable alternative makes a difference. 

Here’s a list of some of the plastic (and sustainability) pledges that we collected. We hope they inspire you.