This October, here at Ward Environmental Services, we are looking at the Unblocktober scheme. Throughout the month of October, Unblocktober helps to encourage people to stop putting certain items down their water systems to help make a small change to the environment. This started in 2019, and they have been working to remind everyone that plastic pollution in our drains and sewers is a part of a larger looming environmental crisis. The first Unblocktober saw more than 4,500 people pledge to change their kitchen and bathroom habits at home and work. This rose to more than 32,000 in 2021 – and we need even more people to get involved this year! The campaign has a great message and is something we think everyone should be aware of.

What is Unblocktober?

This campaign is designed to help people to realise how putting items down the toilet and drain can significantly affect the world around them. Throughout the month of October, it helps to encourage people to stop putting these items down their water systems to help make a small change to the environment. We need to act decisively and quickly to try to change those bad habits and reverse the impact of our actions on our environment. This is a small change to make and something that can be easily fixed if people get involved.

Here at Ward Environmental, we are passionate about helping the environment, and all of our work helps to follow environmentally friendly ways, so we are big fans of this campaign. Our client, Sarah Beeny, is also on board to help spread this message to her followers, and she thinks that this is something that everyone should get involved with!

Did you know?

Did you know that 11 tonnes of plastic is dumped in the ocean every year? This is a considerable amount, and a lot of it comes from people flushing plastic-containing items down their toilets. Things like wet wipes, cotton buds, face masks and nappies are non-biodegradable because they contain hidden plastics and are what cause the significant issues. Having a small bin in your bathroom to put these items in will help to remind you to prevent flushing them. This is the best way to start your Unblocktober.



How can you get involved?

Here at Ward Environmental, we are committed to doing our bit for the environment and encourage everyone else to get involved. Try and get you and your family and friends to commit to stop pouring or flushing certain items down your drains or into the toilet for the whole month of October. This is the first step in making a huge difference to our drainage systems. By taking part in Unblocktober, you will be making a big difference without having to make a considerable effort. Once you get used to doing it for the month of October, you can continue after. You should get into a habit of putting these things in the bin rather than the drain or toilet, and it’ll become something you don’t even have to think about, and you’ll do it naturally.

Plastic rubbish pollution in ocean environment

What items should I think about?

There is a long list of items that are commonly known for being put down the household waste and drains, this includes:

  • Anything containing plastic, for example: Nappies, Condoms, Cotton buds, Contact lenses, Bandages, Plasters, Dental floss, Razor blades
  • Period products – tampons, applicators and wrappers, menstrual pads/towels
  • Facemasks
  • Disposable Gloves
  • Cooking oil
  • Food – even crumbs!
  • Butter/Margarine/Lard
  • Cooking sauce
  • Wet wipes
A sea turtle going to eat a surgical mask. Photo manipulation about ocean pollution and the consequences of overuse of surgical masks during coronavirus pandemic.

Thinking carefully about how you dispose of these items is your way of supporting the Unblocktober campaign and helping to make a difference to the environment, sewers and seas. Putting these items in the bin rather than the toilet or sink can help stop the blockages, stop waste mounds building up and help protect wildlife and sea creatures. If every household was to do this, think of the change we could make! For more information, please visit:

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