10 Plastic Free July Challenges – Some You Don’t Even Need to Leave The House For

Nora Julet

Plastic Free July is here, which means you probably already know that scientists estimate that there are more than 5 trillion pieces of plastic in the ocean. And that those plastics break up (not break down) into tiny pieces that intermix in our food chain.

For Plastic Free July it is important to know that those tiny changes you make in your home can be the best ones. In a year, you won’t believe all the sustainable improvements you have made.

Always remember, your sustainable efforts will inspire others to do better.

I was motivated to start my eco journey when I attended a sustainable Middle School in Mexico. And in college, my sustainability advocate friends inspired me to change my habits into greater impactful ones.

Image via Unsplash

how to reduce plastic

Now it’s my turn to inspire you to join the plastic-free revolution. Here are 10 campaigns to motivate you this Plastic Free July. Let’s do it!

Plastic Free July 2020

Image via Plastic Free July

1. 5 Gyres: Empower Action and Research Against Plastic Pollution

What 5 Gyres has already achieved with voluntary work and donations is extraordinary! They founded the Plastic Pollution Coalition to join forces with other organizations, leaders, and businesses to fight against plastic pollution.

And it doesn’t stop there. They actually have special consultative powers in the United Nations Economic and Social Council. Your donation, however small, will help make a big difference. Here you can donate and here you can learn more about their remarkable work.

2. Donate to Trash Hero For Weekly Cleanups, Refill Programs and Community Workshops

How to be a Trash Hero? Simple: Improve your environment, reduce your waste, and inspire others.

Trash Hero picks up trash in communities from Indonesia to Switzerland. They educate children on sustainable projects and inspire others to do the same. Donating will ensure that all volunteers receive training, transportation costs, and community workshops. Find more about their program and what they are doing during the pandemic.

Plastic Free July 2020

Image via Greenpeace

3. Plastic Paper: Raising Money For Parley

Plastic Paper aims to reduce single-use plastic while celebrating New York City’s graphic design heritage.

Their book has 144 pages of graphic designs in single-use plastic items. 100% of the proceeds, except for the production costs, go to Parley. They also sell shirts, prints and bamboo biodegradable bags. For them, this is a way to honor artists without harming the planet even more.

4. Plastic Free Ecochallenges For One-Time Or Daily Actions

If you are looking for challenges to do every day or week, this is the perfect campaign!

Plastic Free Ecochallenge has tons of actions to complete this Plastic Free July. It’s so simple to become an agent of change in your community! You can choose challenges in the food section or the family section. You can create your team with friends and family, and even add a logo to start winning points.

5. If You’re A Student, Join The Plastic-Free Campus Initiative

If you’re a student or a parent, you can sign this global petition to ban plastic on your campus.

After signing, share it with classmates and parents. Then go to Plastic Free Campus for a comprehensive guide on how to cut plastic from your school. To do this, you will need a strong eco team to help with the groundwork, negotiations, and surveys. It’s a lot of work but so worth it! While schools reopen, gather your tribe and begin preparations.

WWF Australia Plastic Free July

Image via WWF Australia

6. Sign These Petitions To Stop Plastics From Choking Our Oceans

WWF is asking all UN states to set strict goals against plastic pollution and plastic leakage. Everyone can sign their petition. You can also sign all the international petitions for the UN on the Greenpeace website.

7. Take a Pledge With Clean Seas

UN Environment launched Clean Seas as a way to engage individuals, governments, and businesses in the fight against marine plastic pollution.

So far, they’ve persuaded the Indonesian government to pledge to reduce their plastic footprint by 70% by 2025, and India to ban single-use plastic in 2022. And 28 other countries have also joined!

Join the campaign on social media. Use the hashtag #CleanSeas and tag @UNEP when you post a picture of your sustainable switches. And share your pledge to reduce your plastic footprint. It’s so easy now to post on Instagram and become part of a movement!

8. Host A Virtual Screening With Friends To Discuss “The Story of Plastic” & “The Smog of the Sea.”

A favorite stay-at-home activity like binging Netflix can become a sustainable movement. Host a virtual screening with friends to make Q&As, discussions, and activities after watching “The Story of Plastic” and “The Smog of the Sea.” All the details on how you can make this happen are on the documentaries’ webpage.

Also, do you love Netflix parties? You can make one for “A Plastic Ocean” to raise awareness, and inspire your friends to take the Plastic Free July challenge with you. What are you waiting for? Send the invitation!

2 Minute Beach Clean

Image via 2 Minute Beach Clean

9. Share Your #2minutesofpositivity For Plastic Free July

Do you love sharing your artistic talents and use them for positive change to reduce plastic pollution? I know you do! Share your art on social media and join the campaign #2minutesofpositivity.

If you live near the beach and it’s safe for you to go, you can also join #2minutebeachclean to share how you are picking up rubbish. Or, join #2minutelitterpick and #2minutestreetclean. Remember that small actions amount to big ones! If you do this, keep in mind your safety. Learn more about it here.

10. Apps To Guide You This Plastic Free July

Download My Little Plastic Footprint, create an account, and monitor your plastic-free diet. It gives you a to-do list for Plastic Free July and the visuals are so engaging to make sure you reach your plastic goals. Plus, you can calculate your plastic index and compare it to your country’s statistics. Talk about a useful app!

It also has so many quizzes to make you an expert on this movement and drive change in your community. Trust me, they’re really addictive.

Beat The Micro Bead is a quick way to find if a cosmetic product is harmful. Scan the ingredient list to detect microplastics and sign the petition for the EU to ban microplastics in cosmetics. Both apps were developed by the Plastic Soup Foundation, where you can donate to make sure their efforts are amplified.

Advocate For a Plastic-Free Earth

So, there you have it.

Now that you have a starting point to support other campaigns and organizations to share their message, conduct research, advocate, and offer resources to change habits in your community, it is now your turn to use your voice.

What are you willing to commit to this week? And which campaign is your favourite?

Nora Julet

Nora is a feminist, writer and content creator for her Mexican-based fashion podcast called Recóndito Universo de la Moda, where she shares innovative, inclusive, and sustainable Latinx fashion brands.