Break Free From Plastic

Zero Bags – Zero Waste; act for a plastic bag free world!


02 Jul 2013

Written by

Joan Marc


Time to say enough is enough. As we speak, thousands of single-use plastic carrier bags are entering the environment and there is little prospect that the amount of marine litter will start decreasing anytime soon.

postersmallzbzwEvery year the urgency to act on plastic pollution increases, this is why GAIA, Zero Waste Europe and the Fundació Catalana per la Prevenció de Residus i Consum are organising the International Plastic Bag Free Day.

The International Plastic Bag Free Day is a worldwide action that starts on July 3rd and will go on until July 10th. Groups from all continents will be organising actions to restrict the use of single-use plastic bags. This is the 4th year of actions for alternatives to plastic bags.

There are several reasons why we should phase out single-use plastic bags in Europe.

single use plastic bags are

Although Europeans have overwhelmingly supported a ban on single-use plastic bags for quite some time, the European Commission still hasn’t issued any guidance or rules on how to address this problem. The upcoming review of recycling targets for packaging waste is an opportunity that should not be missed in order to stop this source of pollution and incentive to bad consumption.

What can you do?

Organise something to raise awareness or to demand a change in the policy of your country/region and upload them to the website of the campaign:

The concrete shape of your action is for you to decide, you can organise clean-ups, send letters to decisions makers, record videos… it’s up to you! If you need some inspiration here are some hints:

Take a photo of:

–          Plastic bags in nature;

–          Handing reusable bags to politicians – mayor, ministers etc;

–          Famous local people posing with you and a reusable cloth bag;

–          Yourself with a petition or a statement about plastic bags.

Protect nature:

–          Return plastic bags found in nature to industry (manufacturers, distributors ..);

–          Collect plastic bags found in nature and create art pieces exhibited in visible areas of the city-      such as car parks or even in a museum – invite politicians, media or any famous people to the opening;

–          Return single-use plastic bags found in nature to emblematic buildings (environment ministry etc).

Organise actions:

via @ecolutionist

–          Workshop of reusable bags;

–          Give prizes to people who are not asking for a plastic     bag in the shops;

–          Customise your reusable bag (painting, sewing, patchworking…);

–          Creating the “no plastic bag” logo with plastic bags;

–          Giving consumers in shopping centres a reusable bag in exchange for their single-use one;

–          Single-use bags can be shown in a big net so that people can see that plastic bags are still very much consumed;

–          Smart mob with participants and volunteers in a mall or any commercial area with bags on their heads entering shops normally;

You can download some graphs and tools from here.

You can follow the facebook campaign here or follow us on twitter @bagfreeday


The actions take place from 3rd to10th of July.

Please join this global action and promote it among your friends. Together we can get rid of single-use plastic bags and get closer to Zero Waste!

See the Press Release issued by ZWE, GAIA and the Surfrider Foundation Europe asking the European Commission to act on the issue of single-use plastic carrier bags.