Noooooooo! You get the vote – landfill or not?

Filed in Blog by on September 6, 2008 11 Comments
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amazon for selling second hand books and recycling
I have to laugh at this. You remember earlier on I was packing up books for Amazon sales? Well, as you might have guessed I use old packaging. Old jiffy envelopes, cardboard and cardboard that has come into the house gets saved up and put to good use later on.
Using old packaging means you need to tape parcels up as you can rarely re-use the self seal part of the packaging.

In a local shop we can buy individual rolls of sellotape without any packaging – you know how they usually come in cellophane? Well in this shop, we can buy them from a great big sweet jar, which is great and means a no waste purchase.

But look: What do you see in the photo?
tape - end of reel made from plastic

That’s right; the END of a reel of sellotape, which is made from?

Yep; non recyclable plastic.

Little Miss Green’s eyes lit up and she ran off with it as a pot for her fairyland, but we’ve decided to throw it open to you. You can vote on whether or not we’ve in fact created a piece of rubbish for the landfill. I don’t know how long it will provide entertainment for a seven year old, but someday soon it will be winging its way to the landfill.

So, are we still ok with zero waste for the week or have we stumbled at the final gate?
[poll id=”8″]


About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (11)

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  1. Poppy says:

    Oh dear, what a dilema!

    It can be given a temporary reprieve and will therefore have filled the re-use criteria, but what next??

    I think you win …………. for now 😉

  2. Mrs Green says:

    Why thank you ma’am. 2 votes in our favour so far – I can hardly bear the suspense myself. How will I sleep tonight?!

  3. Denise says:

    napkin holder, when not in use in fairyland ?
    big kiss

  4. Oh no Mrs G…before you despair, please please please put it in one of your reusable jiffys and send it to me because I have a plan…a cunning plan…! One of my favourite local artists, Fran Crowe at has sent me a personal message to save all my pieces of rubbish for her latest project. I would be truly honoured if I could include your reel. So please release the guilt and donate it to the worthy cause of rubbish art, which is not rubbish in the slightest but very inspirational. Hee, hee…as you can see, I’m back…and just in time…I would have been appalled to have missed the finale 😀 x

  5. aaargh…too excited to type…Fran’s website is

  6. Mrs Green says:

    Napkin holder – Denise; that’s brilliant. Now you have given me an idea for Little Miss green to give as Christmas presents – she could art them up and make them into unique pieces for napkin loving friends. You’re a star!

    Mrs A – you have rescued us at the eleventh hour, as you’ll see in this morning’s post. Thank you! It will be packed up and sent for a new lease of life to you. Fran’s site is wonderful; I love her stuff’ I’ve just spent half an hour browsing some of her images. Thank you!

  7. Mr Green says:


    It can be given a temporary reprieve and will therefore have filled the re-use criteria, but what next??

    This raises an important point Poppy. It’s all very well reusing platic things as a way to extend their usefullness, but ultimately, they all end up unserviceable, broken or obsolete. Then what? As you suggest they end up as waste.

    The problem is we rely so much on plastics and to reject them totally means we have to abstain from normal C21 life. It would be lovely to have everything made from natural materials, but you can say goodbye to more or less 50-75% of the items you own.

    It’s interesting to do a little audit in your home to see exactly all the items that have polymers in them. It’s usually quite a shock, when you realise that everything from carpets, to clothes, to paints, packaging and electrical goods have something from crude oil in them.

    Do we opt out of everything then? I think we have to live in blance with our needs, but always be mindfull of choosing better alternatives to plastics whever we can.

  8. Hi Mr Green,

    I take a purely landfill approach by cutting bin waste to as near Zero as practicable. This means that there will be some landfill material held back. Plastic lids, cellotape holder stub, etc I keep in a small bag. Aluminium combination waste is also kept back in an ice-cream tub.

    I am expecting future home treatment facilities or recycling options for these waste types. Minimisation by using alternatives is also worthwhile.

  9. Reprieve while you think of something else I reckon, and a stern email to Sellotape to make roll inners from card from now on please.

  10. Poppy says:

    It only appears to be the small rolls, I’ve never seen the bigger rolls with plastic inners. I guess there will be a logical reason, but I can’t see it.

  11. Mrs Green says:

    I will be writing to sellotape this week, as Poppy as reminded me that the large rolls have cardboard and I’m wondering what reason there is for the small ones having plastic.

    Thank you for your votes; it’s great to see you are giving us the benefit of the doubt and this thread has providing some interesting food for thought – what with talk of plastic creeping into our lives in so many guises and talk of waste minimisation.

    Great comments – thank you all for sharing your thoughts.

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