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Mary Renaker's avatar

Mary Renaker

L.A. Zoo - Angeleno Plastic Eliminators (APE)

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 726 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    3.0
    plastic containers
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    13
    pieces of litter
    picked up
  • up to
    2.0
    conversations
    with people
  • up to
    45
    minutes
    spent learning

Mary's Actions

Lifestyle

KEEP IT UPCYCLE

Post to our Team APE feed about an item that you "upcycled" or "creatively reused" and thereby avoided consuming plastic associated with buying a new item and having that item sent to you/your area!

Uncompleted
One-Time Action

Food

Switch to Loose Leaf Tea

Because many tea bags and most sleeves and sachets contain plastic, I will switch to using loose leaf tea.

COMPLETED 0
DAILY ACTIONS

Family

Learn about Environmental Justice

Using the action resource links below, my family will spend 30 minutes learning about environmental justice, causes of environmental injustice, and how plastic waste disproportionately impacts already vulnerable communities.

Uncompleted
One-Time Action

Food

Email a company with photos of paper packaging to encourage them to switch from mylar/plastic

To keep plastics out of the ocean.

Completed
One-Time Action

Community

Join a Cleanup Effort

I will host or participate in a beach, highway, river, or other cleanup effort in my community that follows the CDC’s current guidelines for prevention of disease transfer.

Uncompleted
One-Time Action

Community

Dig into Bioplastics

I will spend at least 15 minutes researching the impacts of bioplastics and how to properly dispose of them in my city, and I will share this information with 3 friends, family, and/or colleagues.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Minimize Packaging

I will purchase food items with the least amount of packaging.

COMPLETED 3
DAILY ACTIONS

Food

Choose Reusable Food Storage

I will only use reusable containers instead of single-use plastic storage items (such as plastic wrap, single-use sandwich bags).

COMPLETED 3
DAILY ACTIONS

Community

Keep My Community Clean

I will pick up 3 piece(s) of litter each day.

COMPLETED 3
DAILY ACTIONS

Feed


  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/31/2022 2:41 PM
    I want to thank all my inspiring teammates for their creativity and dedication to helping us rid ourselves of the scourge of single use plastics to save wildlife and the oceans! You guys are the best! I also have a request. Our amazing teammate Nirel Davies (age 15) is entering 10th grade and is looking for more ways she can join and organization to work with others in groups and continue her good work saving the planet for the next generation. She has been dying to volunteer at the Zoo for years, but her age has always blocked her. She will be 16 in February, so if you have any advice for her please let me know and I'll pass on to her. maryrenaker@me.com. Thank you all again!!!

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/30/2022 2:32 PM
    I'm very proud to say the LA Zoo now has organic, bird friendly coffee for sale in the gift shop! I can't wait to try it. AND it gives us an opportunity to talk about shade grown bird-friendly coffee and why that's so important to protect bird species from habitat loss and extinction. However, it would take a lot to move me off of Cafe Mam, which we've been buying in 5# bags since 1991, because Cafe Mam ticks two boxes. One conservation and one fair trade/socially responsible. The beans come from fair trade cooperatives of native Maya farmers known as the Mam people living in the highlands of Chiapas, Mexico. It's organic and bird-friendly and the fair trade cooperative earns enough money for 
    them to send their children to school. Plus the packaging is 100% biodegradeable. You can see pics of farms on their website cafemam.com.

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/30/2022 2:10 PM
    Our leader, Carol Armstrong, posted a picture of a pull-tab from a plastic pour spout and asked us what alternative there could be and who might we influence. These are used on 1/2 gallon milk cartons and other kinds of drinks. My response was: This has been a huge deal for me for years. I remember writing to Horizon organic milk thanking them for not using plastic pour spouts in the late 1990s and then they started using them. So we switched to Clover because they are old school, the way it was in 50s with only waxed paper. If the liquid can't be sold without a spout in waxed paper it should be in an aluminum can! 

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/15/2022 12:08 PM
    I wrote to GoodCulture.com and sent them a picture of another company using paper packaging for dairy-like products (non-dairy sourcream by Forager) and used the template Ecochallenge provided to write to the company. I received a positive response! Danielle Sternlicht, Customer Service Manager for Good Culture in Irvine, CA, on 7/11/22. She wrote this: "I'm fairly certain that we are moving to the same packaging as the Forager product you have pictured here." So impact recorded!

    • Carol Armstrong's avatar
      Carol Armstrong 7/15/2022 4:22 PM
      Well done, Mary - thank you for doing that and for sharing your success with others!

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/09/2022 12:13 PM
    I reacted to Team Member Carol Armstrong's challenge about the single-use plastic pizza box lid prop and suggested a small wooden prop made of toothpicks, or extra cardboard blocks at the corners of the pizza box to keep the lid from sinking into molten pie.

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/09/2022 12:08 PM
    My husband went to Farmers Market today and bought some peaches that were in this plastic clamshell. The woman who sold them said he could bring the clamshell back. I asked him if when he took it back, if he would ask her if she would continue to buy this type of packaging or if she would consider something else? and he said he would.

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/08/2022 1:13 PM
    Sent this image to company making similar products I love and encouraged them to switch to paper.

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/08/2022 12:49 PM
    Using foil instead of sheet plastic this week to wrap food.

  • Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/03/2022 4:43 PM
    I started to shop for non-plastic sandwich bags and learned there are many many kinds with those labels, even Glad sandwich bags, which is good because it means there is high demand. But, biodegradeable and compostable are not the same thing. Compostable is under "special conditions" in compost and biodegradeable only works in "industrial facilities." It's very confusing, and my husband recommends a small jar for cut up fruit or moist food, or wrapped in paper towel and put in a paper bag. So far, I'm going to hang onto my money and not buy biodegradeable or compostable plastic bags until I learn more.
  • Reflection Question
    Community Keep My Community Clean
    How does the act of picking up litter connect you more to your community?

    Mary Renaker's avatar
    Mary Renaker 7/03/2022 1:24 PM
    I take a bag to pick up plastic litter everytime I go to the beach. 

    • Mary Renaker's avatar
      Mary Renaker 7/03/2022 5:10 PM
      And people come up and congratulate and thank me! I get to interract with other beach-goers who care about the ocean and wildlife.