ice tray

149: Don’t buy bagged ice or plastic ice cubes

Cost of taking action: £/$/€ SAVES MONEY

Using traditional ice trays – metal or plastic – make much more sense

This is another way to stop using plastic unnecessarily!

Simply keep a container (reusing a plastic tub is good!) in your freezer for ice, and make it by using traditional ice trays. These are very simple, like the one pictured, and are made from plastic, aluminium or silicon.

Full with water, freeze, turn upside down and twist to release the ice, then re-use. Store the ice in a container with a lid.

Why is this a “green” action?

Making your ice this way is helpful for several reasons:

  • buying bags of ice from the supermarket is expensive (about £1/$1 for a couple of kilos)
  • Tap water is MUCH cheaper, or FREE
  • bags of ice are always plastic, single use and not always recyclable
  • making ice in little plastic pocketed bags is expensive and unnecessary
  • and again, this produces even more plastic waste
  • this really is (pictured below) an appalling use of single-use plastic, and totally unnecessary
Sainsbury's ice cube bags

Why is this important?

No one knows exactly how long a plastic bag is likely to take to degrade, but estimates range from 10 years to hundreds of years. During this time, they are adding to a horrendous landfill legacy or contaminating our wider environment, causing death and injury to wildlife, poisoning, littering, and generally lowering our living standards.

Recent research indicates that rather than breaking down – which implies the problem will disappear – plastics just break into smaller and smaller pieces – you will have heard the terms “microplastics” and “nanoplastics”. These tiny pieces of plastic are now contaminating our food chains, especially through seafood.

Take action

It’s easy, please just resolve to make your ice using simple ice trays. You can build up several kilos to use at your summer barbecue party by storing it in reusable plastic tubs such as ice cream tubs.

You will be saving a lot of plastic and tap water is free!

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