This City of Asheville is launching the Less Plastic Asheville Challenge to encourage residents to reduce their consumption of single-use plastics. The campaign has two key features, a social media challenge called Less Plastic Bingo and a Pass on Plastic Pledge. The City will provide information on the impacts of single-use plastic on our community and tips for how our residents can understand and reduce their consumption of single-use plastics at tabling events around town and on our social media platforms. Those participating in the social media challenge can post photos and videos of themselves taking action to reduce single-use plastic consumption.
Those who take the pledge will make commitments to sustainable lifestyle choices such as using reusable grocery bags and refusing single-use plastics. Residents who participate in either the Less Plastic Bingo Challenge or Pass on Plastic Pledge will win great prizes! The Less Plastic Asheville Challenge will begin in February 14, 2024 and end May 31, 2024. Follow the link at the top of the page to learn more about how you can participate and win these great sustainable items.
In October 2022, Asheville City Council directed the Sustainability Department to take a phased approach to reduce the consumption of single-use plastic.
The first phase included an update to Chapter 15 of the City Code to prohibit the use of plastic bags in curbside brush and leaf collection. This ordinance change was approved by City Council on January 10, 2023 and was implemented August 1, 2023. For more information about this change and resources available check out this sanitation webpage.
The second phase included further analysis and stakeholder engagement with area businesses, residents and city staff to inform a recommendation on additional single-use plastic reduction strategies surrounding plastic bags at point of sale and expanded polystyrene (StyrofoamTM) disposable foodware products. To see the results of this engagement read this blog post.
On September 22, 2023 the North Carolina General Assembly approved the state budget that included a law prohibiting local governments from banning single-use plastic products. Due to this regulation, the City cannot adopt an ordinance banning plastic bags or expanded polystyrene (StyrofoamTM) takeout containers. Instead, the City is providing information and resources to residents and businesses to reduce single-use plastic consumption voluntarily through the Less Plastic Asheville Challenge. For more information on the previous plastic-reduction projects go to this webpage.
Less Plastic Asheville Challenge
There are two ways to participate in the Less Plastic Asheville Challenge. You can take the Pass on Plastic Pledge and/or play Less Plastic Asheville Bingo. The pledge asks for you to commit to changes in your life to reduce your own plastic footprint, and the Bingo Challenge asks you to spread the word and help educate and inspire others about the issue through social media.
The Pass on Plastic Pledge
The Pass on Plastic Pledge asks you to look at your own habits regarding single-use plastics and commit to practices that cut down your consumption, simple acts that improve our community and the environment. By taking this pledge, you are taking the charge to reduce your own plastic consumption. You can do this in a number of ways and the City of Asheville is here to inspire, support and cheer you on!
When you commit to any one of the sustainable practices in the pledge, you will win plastic reducing prizes from the City. Your actions alone can reduce hundreds of pounds of plastic waste every year! By taking this pledge, you are showing that you care about the health, cleanliness, and pristine environment of our home in Asheville. It’s a big deal, and the City of Asheville thanks you.Take the Pass on Plastic Pledge
Less Plastic Asheville Bingo
This bingo game is a social media challenge. It’s a fun way for you to help spread the word about single-use plastics, and to inspire the people around you to make changes and support sustainable businesses and habits. When you sign up, you will be emailed a bingo card. Once you have your card, follow the steps below in order to earn your swag.
- Take videos or pictures to create social media content that matches the descriptions on the bingo card. You can choose any five pieces of content that form a complete bingo row. Content that does not form a straight line bingo will not count.
- Post this content on your own social media page (Facebook or Instagram Only) and include the hashtag #LessPlasticAsheville and tag @CityofAsheville.
- Copy the links from all five of your posts and send them in a single email to email@example.com. After we check out your great posts we will send you an email with our appreciation letting you know how you can collect your prizes!
- If you chose to take the Less Plastic Pledge as one of your bingo items (the center square) please include the email you used to take the pledge as one of your five email items.
Sign up below to receive your Less Plastic Bingo Card.
Come Find Us Out in the Community
Keep your eyes peeled to see city staff at local businesses and locations. We will be out in the community every week from February through May hosting tabling events about single-use plastic reduction. We will be there to guide people through the Less Plastic Asheville challenge, hand out prizes and reusable bags, and offer educational resources. Check the schedule below to know when and where to find us.
- 2/23 Hollywood Feed, 4 S Tunnel Rd 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM (East Asheville)
- 3/2 French Broad Co-Op, 90 Biltmore Ave 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM (Downtown)
- 3/9 North Asheville Tailgate Market, 275 Edgewood Rd 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM (North Asheville)
- 3/12 Hopey and Co, 800 Fairview Rd 4:00 PM – 6:30 PM (East Asheville)
- 3/17 United Grocery Outlet, 121 New Leicester Hwy 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM (West Asheville)
- 4/2 West Asheville Tailgate Market, 718 Haywood Rd 3:30 PM – 6:30 PM (West Asheville)
- 5/21 West Asheville Tailgate Market, 718 Haywood Rd 3:30 PM – 6:30 PM (West Asheville)
- 5/24 French Broad Co-Op, 90 Biltmore Ave 4:30 PM – 7:00 PM (Downtown)
More dates and locations coming soon!
Resources and Additional Information
- Estimate your own individual plastic consumption with this calculator.
- Follow the City of Asheville on social media for informational posts and plastic reducing life hacks.
- Learn about the City’s Litter Reduction Programs
- Where to get paper bags for brush collection
- City of Asheville sanitation webpage
- What is Recyclable
Aurora Wynne, Resilience Project Coordinator North Carolina Climate Action Corps Fellow