Special Report

19 Genius Inventions That Can Stop Us from Using So Much Plastic

Source: MichellePatrickPhotographyLLC / Getty Images

Stainless steel straws

Plastic straws are everywhere. Up to 8.3 billion plastic straws are lying on shores all over the world, often ending up in the digestive systems of marine life. These items have become such a huge problem, more and more countries and cities are banning them altogether or restricting their use. Reusable metal straws could help replace disposable plastic ones.

Source: Courtesy of Avani Eco

Cassava ponchos

Vinyl ponchos are arguably a lot more comfortable to wear on a rainy day than carrying an umbrella. The problem is that most of these ponchos will be thrown away after a few uses, but will not decompose for millions of years. So one man with a biology degree from Indonesia created ponchos, bags and food packaging from cassava, a common vegetable found across the country.

Source: Courtesy of Amazon

Silicone food bags

Just imagine how much trash you would avoid accumulating if you didn’t have to throw out plastic sandwich bags. Made from 100% pure platinum silicone, these storage food bags are fully functional, self-sealing, and, most importantly, non-plastic. They are airtight as well as leakproof.

Source: Courtesy of Skipping Rock Labs

Edible water bottles

At first glance, this is not intuitive. Eating the packaging of the product? It’s possible. After all, it’s made from plant-based materials. Ooho is made from seaweed-extract. The material degrades in a natural environment in six weeks on average — as opposed to 450 years for plastic bottles — unless you eat it.

Source: Courtesy of BAKEYS

Edible forks, spoons, and chopsticks

Another type of popular plastic product you no longer have to worry about — because you can eat the alternative — is cutlery. Bakeys spoons, forks, and even chopsticks are made of sorghum, rice, and wheat flour. They are baked in moulds and sometimes flavors are added, too. You basically don’t have to buy dessert anymore — it’s already in your hands.