We’ve all been enjoying 30 Days Wild here in the Waste Team and we were really pleased to see a few waste related Random Acts of Wildness! So we wanted to share them with you and encourage you to have a go at these in June:

Ditch Your Disposables

Save the world one coffee cup at a time and buy a reusable coffee cup or water bottle and cut down on your waste. Some major coffee chains even offer a discount off your drink if you use a reusable cup.

Starbucks

You can get 25p off a hot drink if you use your own cup. This was introduced after a campaign was launched to reduce the 2.5 billion disposable cups dumped in landfill or incinerated each year in Britain. The company even offers to recycle any stores coffee cups as long as you tip out the liquid, remove the lid a sleeve and place the cup in their designated bins.

Caffe Nero

While you can't get a discount at the chain, you can get two stamps on loyalty cards rather than just one. This means you get a free coffee after five drinks bought, rather than the ten you'd normally need.

Costa

Costa allows customers to bring their own cups – but there is no price incentive. Their website says: "At Costa we are proud of our iconic takeaway cups and are working really hard to ensure that more of them are being recycled. We know you, our customers, are concerned. We are too." Similarly to Starbucks, the company also offers to recycle any stores coffee cups as long as you tip out the liquid, remove the lid a sleeve and place the cup in their designated bins.

Similarly, it’s just as important to switch to a reusable water or drinks bottle, especially as Britain stills fails to recycle an incredible 16 million plastic bottles a day

Become a Wildlife Champion

The worst thing in the world is seeing a piece of litter on the floor of a park when there is a bin 20 yards away. Be a champion for nature and put it in the bin, or even better, recycle it!

Improve your local neighbourhood or green space by organising a community litter pick. It’ll get you outside and active, not to mention the benefits for the environment and nature. It’ll clear up those dirty roadside edges and help nature to flourish!

Think Before You Buy

Why not try buying one new eco-friendly product and use less water this week? Your local river will love it and so will you! Search online for more environmentally friendly cleaning products so you can ditch the bleach. Look out for soaps and shampoos with more natural ingredients. Avoid products containing microplastics like face scrubs and whitening toothpaste, as these tiny plastic pollutants are not biodegradable and have ended up in our seas and oceans, with water treatment facilities unable to remove them from our drain water.

Microplastics have been found in marine species such as fish, shellfish, and plankton, and have even entered the food chain, meaning that the food we eat may contain microplastics; ultimately threatening our own health.

So what have we been doing for 30 Days Wild (for waste)?

Gemma has been working with Friends of Abberd Brook in Calne to engage local youths with nature activities, including making upcycled bird feeders and nest boxes, upcycled bug homes and going on litter picks. Their creations are a great example of additional Random Acts of Wildness you could have a go at. You’ll be saving waste from landfill, reducing your environmental impact, whilst also providing a helping hand for local wildlife!

We’ve also launched a new Reward Card Scheme in Ludgershall Castle Primary School. The Reward Card gives four mini-challenges to students, which once completed, a parent or guardian signs off before returning it to school in exchange for a badge and an entry into a prize draw to win a membership to Wildlife Watch, the junior branch of The Wildlife Trust! We’re hoping to introduce this scheme to other schools and other areas as we go.

Go beyond 30 Days Wild and try “The Plastic Free July Challenge”!

We’re currently rallying troops to take part in The Plastic Free July Challenge, which aims to raise awareness of the problems with single-use disposable plastic and challenges people to do something about it. Plastics are of huge environmental concern, breaking up into tiny pieces, unable to biodegrade, usually only able to be recycled into low-grade material which subsequently ends up in landfill. Plastics are constantly ending up in our waterways either as litter or micro-plastics, with scientists predicting that there will be more tonnes of plastic than tonnes of fish by 2050! Every bit of plastic ever made still exists and in the first 10 years of this century, the world economy produced more plastic than the entire 1900's!

Plastic Free July is all about choosing more wisely, avoiding over-packaged products, one-use plastic bags and packaging, recycling what you can and refusing ‘escape plastics’ such as straws, utensils, balloons etc. To sign up or find out more, click here.

Enjoy the rest of 30 Days Wild and don’t forget to have a go at a waste themed Random Act of Wildness!

The Waste Team