Sally Flannery Ceramic
A local to the Northern rivers of NSW - a full time ceramic artist and embracer of sustainable living/business. instagram.com/sallyflannery
Started 3 petitions
Who Gives A Crap - Please Stop Packaging Your Toilet Paper in Plastic - We Give a Crap!
The brand Who Gives A Crap is an awesome brand. A social enterprise that makes toilet paper out of post consumer recycled paper, sends them plastic free in a cardboard box to your door, and then uses 50% of their profits to fund sanitary programs around the world. They have gained popularity in the zero waste/eco/environmental community and for good reason. They have an emphasis on sustainability, with one of their mottos being "Good for the world, good for people, good for your bum". They don't use any inks, dyes or scents. Looking at their website, I'm happy to pay a little bit more for this super eco product. I have loved getting this toilet paper delivered to my door, and felt good about supporting an innovative brand doing amazing things. As someone working towards a zero waste lifestyle, Who Gives A Crap seems completely aligned with my values. The problem (simplified) Considering how awesome this company is, you might be as surprised as I was when I saw 'Who Gives A Crap' selling six packs of toilet paper in my local store - packaged in plastic. They address this on the packaging, stating that the specific type of plastic is better - however, when you really look into it, it's actually not at all. Oxo biodegradable plastics turn into microplastics and wreak havoc on the environment and our food chain (should you eat meat). This is not just plastic packaging, but one with extra devastating consequences. The problem (in depth) Considering how awesome this company is, you might be as surprised as I was when I saw 'Who Gives A Crap' selling six packs of toilet paper in my local store - packaged in plastic. This actually stopped me in my tracks. I bought the toilet paper, so I could look into this further - the store was closing and so I bought the pack, took it home and inspected further. On the package it says "Wait, plastic packaging? Yup. We know it feels icky, but we've done our homework and it turns out that the environmental impact of this plastic packaging is better than a similar paper package would be. Want to learn more? Visit our website (and a link).." I felt pretty sceptical so of course, I followed the link (I'm sure a lot of people would have just trusted that they'd looked into it and were right) . This is the link: au.whogivesacrap.org/paperorplastic It states that the main reason they chose plastic packaging over paper is that paper can tear and then the product would be wasted. This didn't sit right with me considering brands like PLANET ARK currently package their recycled paper toilet paper in paper without any overwhelming issues and have done for years. Then the page goes on to explain that they use an "eco plastic' called oxy biodegradable which breaks down eventually (2 years under the exact 'right' circumstances which is unlikely). It doesn't go into detail but suggests this will essentially break down and have no negative impact. The thing is - it does break down, but it breaks down into microplastics. Which is arguably even worse then regular plastic. In fact, it's so bad the EU is currently working to blanket ban the plastics as it is so detrimental to the environment. Then the page links to a TED TALK by Leyla Acaroglu which actually is worth watching if you're interested: https://www.ted.com/talks/leyla_acaroglu_paper_beats_plastic_how_to_rethink_environmental_folklore?language=en#t-1067331 Most people would probably not watch the video, and assume it backs up their point and that they're doing the right thing. So the TED Talk basically focuses on the fact that we need to consider the entire life cycle of a product and the impact of it at creation, use and after (to the end of it's life cycle). Which I totally agree with. We need to address design in a circular economic fashion, where waste is designed out of the equation entirely. It mentions that, in some cases, plastic might be OVERALL more sustainable than paper. It is definately a complex issue and the TED talk is worth watching. But it didn't make me think that this situation was justified.. in fact, considering Leyla's main point : that we need to consider the entire life cycle of the product.. here is my problem: This is not sustainable on any level - production or disposal. "While often confused with biodegradable plastics, oxo-degradables are a category unto themselves. They are neither a bioplastic nor a biodegradable plastic, but rather a conventional plastic mixed with an additive in order to imitate biodegredation. Oxo-degradable plastics quickly fragment into smaller and smaller pieces, called microplastics, but don’t break down at the molecular or polymer level like biodegradable and compostable plastics. The resulting microplastics are left in the environment indefinitely until they eventually fully break down." -GreenDot BioPlastics So, on one hand we have closed loop recycling of paper which reduces the need for the creation of new product while also diverting waste from landfill - taking a waste product and using it again (which is what Planet Ark do, with no issue, which is a circular economy based approach) On the other hand.. Who Gives A Crap is taking toxic chemicals and petrolium to make conventional PET plastic, adding more chemicals to create a chemical reaction (if under certain conditions, for about 2 years which is unrealistic) in the product which causes it to eventually break down into smaller and smaller microplastics which become an astronomical envrionmental problem. On the other (third?) hand we have compostable packaging readily available. If you really think recycled paper is unsustainable (which I find hard to believe considering your product itself is made from recycled paper) then perhaps consider some of the amazing compostable packaging that exists readily - home compostable, made sustainably from renewable fast growing crops like corn, and won't break down into microplastics. Why it hurts your brand Who Gives a Crap - I really like you guys. I have spent more money than usual on toilet paper to support your business, because I was under the impression that it aligns with my values. I want to keep supporting you, but I'm so disappointed by this. It appears so off brand for you guys. It feels a lot like greenwashing. It feels like you're trying to tell us these oxo biodegradable plastics are better when they're simply not. There is no mention of this store bought 6 pack product on your website, and no photos on your social media and only one photo I could find on the internet from a stockist.. It seems like perhaps this is intentional, but regardless - I wouldn't have known about this unless I stumbled upon it. I'm honestly glad I did though. For a brand I thought was zero waste and helping me achieve that in my own life, I am surprised that you are seriously trying to tell me that this type of plastic is more environmentally friendly than post consumer recycled paper, or - even more so, plant based home compostable materials. Even more, you're trying to tell us that biodegradable plastics that break down into microplastics are 'good for the planet'. I'm just not buying it. What do we want? We want you to enable us to continue to support your business, by doing the right thing by us as consumers and making a change that aligns with your/our collective values. Please stop using plastic. You know better. We as consumers know better. We want better. Please don't wrap your awesome product in plastic that breaks down into microplastics and tell us it's more eco than post consumer recycled paper or compostable materials. We know better than that. Please make a change that aligns with your values (and us as consumers) so I (and I'm sure many others) can continue to support the good work you're doing. You are doing awesome things and contributing to real environmental change but this is so off brand for you and it will influence my continuing to purchase with you - which I want to do, but I won't if you continue to greenwash (one of the worst kinds of) plastic and tell us it's better than paper/compostable packaging. Let's strive for what's really better and choose truely sustainable packaging and consider it's whole life cycle. I hope you'll consider this change and I hope this petition shows you that your customers want better than plastic - please make the change so we can continue to support your business knowing we're supporting a truly environmental business.
Officeworks - Please reduce your landfill - Choose compostable satchels over more plastic!
The problem: Officeworks currently offers an in house postal service called 'Mailman'. It runs off a self serve style, flat rate parcel system. It's innovative and effective - but also features satchels made of plastic. Many consumers would love to use this service but are turned off doing so by the single use plastic. Individuals and businesses Australia wide are becoming more conscious of the plastic we consume and the amount of waste we are contributing to landfill. Officeworks is a company obsessed with recycling - which is a great thing. BUT, we are in the midst of a recycling crisis. We can't just keep making waste and 'recycle our way out'. Officeworks handles paper a lot, and recycled paper is great - but when it comes to plastic, let's be really clear: RECYCLING PLASTIC DOES NOT STOP IT FROM ENTERING LANDFILL. Plastic generally can't be 'recycled' - only 'downcycled', meaning it can only ever be melted down into a cruder version of plastic than it already is. After one reuse, possibly a few more if you're lucky - the plastic still generally ends up in landfill. Officeworks plastic mailman satchels are a soft plastic. So what do we want? We want officeworks to introduce compostable satchels. This is totally achievable - and currently Officeworks is in the process of redesigning their packaging, so it is the perfect time for them to step up and lead this innovative change. Consumers want this change. We want less plastic. I have put them in contact with an organisation who would be able to provide large scale compostable packaging which could break down when buried or home composted. This would effectively reduce the amount of Officeworks satchels ending up in landfill almost entirely - any that did, would simply break down in a matter of weeks - rather than hundreds of years. Officeworks claims to embrace and care about sustainability - We want you to wholeheartedly demonstrate the eco thoughtfulness that you claim to represent. We want this change. We want alternatives to plastic. We want compostable packaging. It's time. Officeworks - please consider replacing your plastic (or partially recycled plastic) satchels with compostable satchels. Please empower your customers to choose your service as a truly sustainable option. At the least, consider even adding compostable satchels as an alternative so customers could choose this wherever possible. The majority of customers want sustainable options. Please step up officeworks #officeworksyoucandobetter What can you do? - Sign this petition -Share this petition -Share it in an eco group you love **Please remember not to be rude/threatening/abusive. I find the best way to inspire change is by providing honest feedback - these people are doing jobs as well and don't deserve horrible emails so please try to stick to constructive criticism :) For any contact : please email email@example.com
Aus Post: Stop charging us more to use eco friendly packaging than your plastic satchels
To Australia Post : Currently industrial and commercial shipping/packaging waste is a huge contributor to landfill every year. Knowing the current landfill crisis and the overwhelming need to reduce waste nationwide, we ask you to please step up and become an example towards sustainability and innovation. Currently it is cheaper (in the majority of situations) to send parcels in a brand new single use flat rate plastic satchel than in compostable/biodegradable/recycled or reusable/sustainable packaging. Australia Post's plastic flat rate satchels are an attractive option for small-large businesses in Australia as they reduce the cost of shipping significantly - however the cost to the environment can no longer be ignored. Amazing businesses like @betterpackagingco now offer innovative alternatives to plastic packaging - like compostable postage satchels that can be composted at home. Even for a satchel the exact same weight and size, Australia Post will charge more for the plastic satchel over the BYO sustainable packaging. *To clarify, packages under 500g generally have a similar flat rate fee anyway regardless of packaging - it is over 500g that this issue occurs. Packages over 500g can cost 2-3x as much as using the plastic prepaid parcels, even if the weight and dimensions are identical. If the only difference is the material the package is wrapped in - surely Aus Post can include our eco packaging in this flat rate structure. When it comes to boxes: I were to ship an order off in a recycled/reused box (completely recycled box, with paper tape, 100% compostable) - it would be CHEAPER for me to put that exact same box into a plastic satchel and send it that way. It is simply incentivising using extra packaging and less recycled or sustainable shipping. Australia Post has committed to demonstrating change on sustainable values - let's see that become a reality. This is an easy change. What we want: We want Australia Post to incorporate BYO satchel pricing into their flat rate pricing system. We want to be able to ship parcels in flat rate satchels, without having to use Australia Post's single use plastic satchels which contribute to further landfill. If Australia Post simply changed it's policy from not allowing 'own packaging' satchels to fall under the flat rate pricing structure - to allowing it, small businesses wouldn't have to make a choice between sustainability and excessive postal costs. Even if it were an approved manufacturer / bag that had the same size as your satchels, so there was an environmentally thoughtful option for customers (this option would help reduce time spent measuring if this is a concern). This is a simple change that would have hugely beneficial environmental implications. Satchels would be the same exact weight and dimensions as your current flat rate satchels and amazing company @betterpackagingco has already said that they are prepared to work with Australia Post to create satchels the exact dimensions of Australia Post's current satchels. So ultimately - nothing would change but your policy (and a hugely beneficial change for the environment) We would like (Sally, petition creator) to be able to have a conversation with Christine Holgate or another key decision maker within Australia Post, to open a dialogue on how changes can realistically/reasonably be implemented to positively align with Australia Post's values, as well as the increasing demand for environmentally thoughtful postage options. Why is this important? Australia Post has already partnered up with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and made a commitment to improve their practices in regard to: industry, infrastructure and innovation, sustainable cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, climate action and more. Currently this small bit of policy in regards to BYO (eco friendly) satchels and Australia Post's flat rate shipping fee structure - makes a huge difference to small business owners wanting to be more sustainable. A relatively small change for Australia Post would have huge impact on small business owners across Australia, and on the environment. Australia post needs to lead by example. It is important to acknowledge that Australia Post has previously made steps towards greater sustainability - including introducing recycling schemes for their plastic mailers via third parties like terracycle. However, recycling plastics means melting them down further, releasing more toxic fumes into the environment and casting them into a cruder plastic. Ultimately, plastic can only ever really be 'downcycled' - becoming cruder and inferior in quality each time it is reused until eventually still winding up in landfill. Recycling plastic only stalls it's inevitable entry into landfill - we need to make change to reduce, rather than relying on a recycling system which is already overwhelmed. There is already huge support and demand for sustainable packaging options and small businesses all over Australia are embracing these more environmental ways to ship. Small businesses all over Australia are embracing these more environmental ways to ship - but often paying significantly more as a result. Making this small change would see it become more affordable for businesses to choose to ship sustainability/post without contributing to more unnecessary environmental waste. What would this change mean for Australian Small Businesses? It means that small businesses would be able to ship using sustainable packaging options like recycled mailers (turning mailers inside out to reuse) or compostable/biodegradable satchels. It means small business owners wouldn't have to make a choice any longer between excessive shipping costs and sustainability. What would this change mean for Australia Post? It would mean a small policy change in relation to their flat rate fee structure and BYO packaging. It would mean following through in an amazing way on their commitment to upholding environmental/sustainable values. It would mean becoming a leader in innovation and truly making a huge leap forwards towards reducing packaging landfill. In Summation: Australia Post, please consider truly embodying the goals you have suggested - becoming a company who truly represents sustainability, climate action and eco-friendliness on a phenomenal scale. You've already shown your values as a company by committing to this change with the UN sustainability goals, now please lead by example and embody those changes. This is a minor change in the scheme of things to a piece of policy regarding flat rate satchels and byo packaging. This change could be made quickly, easily and with a hugely beneficial outcome for our planet. Now is the time. Individuals: Please support this petition by simply signing your name. You have the ability to help drive real change on a grassroots level. Sharing the petition will help spread the cause more. Not only would Aus Post making this change help reduce an insane amount of plastic ending up in landfill every single year - but it would be a hugely positive example on a large corporate scale. This is the sort of change Australia needs right now. Let's drive this change. Together, with Australia Post, we can make a huge step forwards for the planet. Businesses Who Support This Petition: Sally Flannery Ceramics @sallyflannery Businesses: Please share this petition, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to pledge your support on the bottom of the petition here x