ColletArrow wrote:The article goes on to state that "plastic-free" means the town is against single-use plastics rather plastics in general. All that remains is whether or not the banner counts as single-use; it's not exactly going to be re-used, but it does have a longer (intended) lifespan than throw-away packaging. Hmm.
Since your post, I've been pondering (to nobody's advantage, even mine, but I have so I might as well tell you what I have pondered) and decided that "Single Use Plastic" is definitely the wrong term. Right now I'm on a park bench, looking at (or at least toward) a park rubbish bin that appears to be plasticy in its various external parts (top, sides, access door), around a metal frame and extractable bin-container. They are all single-use elements, yet should (the ravages of vandals aside) last for a long, long time. More than wood (may even be far less flammable and somewhat self-extinguishing) and maybe more than completely unprotected metal (which, let's face it, is also one of the horns of this dilemma!).
If (I haven't looked) there's a plastic bin-liner in the bin-container (for better management) it may be single-use as it gets swapped out each time it is emptied, or it may be reused as long as it remains intact enough between emptyings as the container+bag are upended and just the accumulated detritus transferred to whatever garbage-collection vehicle/trolley they use here.
I'm toying with the idea of swapping "single use" for maybe something like "transient utility". Or perhaps, in the case of packaging materials, "transit(ory)
utility". It vilifies the right(/wrong) use of plastics and doesn't apply to the ones where they're actually a decent idea (like a long-term use of a banner, or the coating on a CD) so long as you then do what you can at the end of their extended
life. It doesn't help classify copiously shed microfibres from artificial/part-artificial textiles, discarded nurdles and fragments of plastic from other (good) uses ending in uncontrolled fragmentation, but you can't have everything...
And now I think I should quit this park (having eaten my sandwiches, and drunk my drink) and get onto more important things. Even if they don't save the world, either.