We’d love to keep sharing our exciting developments in the Global Good community with you, but you’ll need to ‘opt-in’ to our communications before 25th May, when GDPR takes effect. Read more about how we protect your data here >>
When the Global Good Awards launched the PointlessPlastics hashtag, we set out a campaign that aims to highlight solutions to our plastic problems, to accentuate the positives and the possibilities. That means using the hashtag to help raise awareness of pointless or easily replaceable uses of plastics. Identifying solutions that will improve material use. And highlighting the good work of those who are taking action, right now, to reduce the use of plastics: our #PointlessPlastics heroes.
This month we are focussing on a super-smart initiative that is delivering a practical solution to one of our big plastic problems… We spoke with Nadine, the Refill London coordinator to find out about their role in the Refill campaign.
The Refill campaign is all about taking a positive, solutions oriented, approach to addressing plastic pollution generated from single use plastics, such as plastic water bottles. Refill London is about utilising the infrastructure already in place to take immediate action against plastic pollution. Businesses across the capital are signing up as Refill Stations to make tap water accessible for people on the go. Every reusable bottle that is refilled means one less plastic bottle being bought and thrown away.
Hashtags such as #PointlessPlastics, #PlasticPollution and #OneLess are being used to help raise awareness around the ongoing issue of plastic pollution, encouraging people to switch to tap water and reusable water bottles. The campaign and hashtags also highlight the good work of those who are leading the charge in reducing the usage of single use plastics by making these small, but powerful changes.
Collaborating for good
City to Sea, the founders of Refill, launched the scheme in Bristol in September 2015 and due to its success, are now rolling it out nationwide.
The latest drive is Refill London – a collaboration between City to Sea and Thames Water – that is further tackling plastic pollution by making tap water as accessible as possible and celebrating its world class quality. Refill London is centrally coordinated by Project Dirt, a community focused social enterprise, who are delivering Action Days across the capital, recruiting volunteers and Refill Stations.
In the UK alone, it is estimated that 800 plastic bottles per minute end up in landfill or as litter. Single-use plastic bottles are expensive to produce, create mountains of waste, and use up valuable natural resources to make and transport. All too often, plastic waste is making its way into our waterways, and out to sea. Read more about marine plastic pollution here.
In contrast, tap water creates 500 times less CO2 than bottled water, it’s safer and more regulated, and London’s tap water actually scored highest in a blind taste test against bottled water. Plus, refilling is cost effective. Investing in a reusable water bottle and refilling with tap water saves you money. A litre of water costs just 0.2p, so filling up ten 500ml bottles only costs a penny.
Refill is engaging friendly businesses of all kinds, to welcome people in to refill their water bottle, utilising the infrastructure we have to enable us to take action against plastic pollution. Installing public water fountains takes time and can be expensive to install and maintain. Refill is making use of what we already have, at no extra cost.
How does Refill work?
Participating businesses can place a sticker in their window to let thirsty passers-by know they are welcome in to refill their water bottles for free. Businesses are also adding themselves onto the Refill app, an interactive map directing people to their nearest Refill Station.
Since Refill London kicked off in March 2018, over 1150 businesses have signed up as Refill Stations, each welcoming in members of the public for free tap water refills, in turn doing their bit to help tackling plastic waste.
Get involved with Refill London
Our mission is to make Refill London HUGE, so we need your help. To do this we need Londoners to help us sign up as many Refill Stations as possible, to make refill culture easy and a part of our everyday routines. Visit the Refill London site to find out how people can get involved in one of our Action Days, hold their own Action Day, or volunteer as a Solo Champion.
If you are a London business interested in signing up to become a Refill Station, follow this quick link.
Refill is rolling out across the country, check out the latest schemes to get involved in your area.
One last thing… Remember to wash your bottle!
We should mention that recent studies have found that many people aren’t washing their reusable bottles as often as they should… remember to wash them now and again!
For more on #PointlessPlastics, including our #PointlessPlastics heroes series, visit Good Stuff on the GGA website or find us on Twitter at @GlobalGoodAward to nominate a hero, or ask a question, email karen@GlobalGoodAwards.co.uk
Join us at the 2018 GGA Ceremony: To celebrate excellence in social impact and sustainability (and sample our vegan wines!)
You don’t have to be an entrant to come along to the GGA ceremony! If you’re involved in social impact or sustainability, the GGA is the place to be! From our ‘eco-tie’ dress code, to our completely vegan menu, we aim to set the standard for sustainable events, and we want to share our learnings with you. Find out more about the 2018 ceremony, here>>