Say No to Plastic

Say No to Plastic

Would you like a bag for that? We’re hoping to make your answer easier.


From now on at Books Kinokuniya Sydney, every time you say no to a plastic shopping bag at our cashiers, we will donate five cents to our primary chosen charity, the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.

That’s nice, but why do that? Why not just eliminate conventional plastic shopping bags altogether, or replace them with something better, like paper bags?

The answer, we’ve discovered, is not that simple.

The war on waste and battle against environmentally ‘un-friendly’ materials like plastics is a major one. With ongoing efforts by state and territory governments to ban single-use non-biodegradable plastic bags and major supermarkets banning single-use bags, it feels like everyone has been talking about it.

At first, the answer seemed simple. Single-use, non-biodegradable plastic bag = BAD. Solution? Stop providing them.

But now, we’re discovering that things are not quite so clear cut.

There’s the argument to replace plastic with paper – paper is recyclable, compostable, biodegradable. That’s a win… right? Well, as outlined in an article from the Guardian, it turns out that despite all of the above, paper bags require four times more energy to make and transport than plastic, have less re-use potential and produce methane if dumped in landfill. In addition, paper-bag manufacture uses twenty times as much water as plastic and paper also requires more energy to be recycled.

And, it’s also turning out that we need to reuse our paper or multiple-use bags a LOT to reduce their global warming potential, in comparison with the traditional plastic bag. According to a study by the Environment Agency in the UK, paper and multiple-use LDPE, non-woven polypropylene and cotton bags should be reused at least 3, 4, 11 and 131 times respectively to ensure that they have lower global warming potential than conventional single-use carrier bags that are not reused.

So, where does that leave us? A rock and a hard place, it looks like.

While it might not be a clear-cut, black-and-white picture, and there are definitely many facets to consider, there is one thing that most can agree on: we can all reduce our everyday use of carrier bags and reuse them as much as possible for a positive impact.

Waste warriors like Alexx Stuart  and Anita Vandyke champion the war against waste and offer simple, everyday solutions that everyone can take to minimise their waste for a more sustainable future.

Here at Kino we don’t presume to have all the answers. We have a commitment to our customers to provide them a free carrier bag solution if they need it, and also other affordable and reusable options in non-woven polypropylene or canvas. Our free plastic bags are also made from sturdy material, which can and should be used more than once.

So we’re leaving the choice to you.

And if you do choose to take your book purchase home without a plastic bag, we’ll sweeten the deal with a contribution to the ILF every time you make that choice.


9780143791379Zero Waste Life
by Anita Vandyke
RRP $19.99

A Zero Waste Life is the ultimate guide to radically reducing your waste, without losing your lifestyle. In her thirty–day challenge, Anita provides you with the rules, tips and tricks you need to eliminate plastic and live a cleaner, kinder life.




9781760631925Low Tox Life
by Alexx Stuart
RRP $35.00

Activist and educator Alexx Stuart gently clears a path through the maze of mass-market ingredient cocktails, focusing on four key areas: Body, Home, Food and Mind. Sharing the latest science and advice from experts in each area, Alexx tackles everything from endocrine-disruptors in beauty products to the challenge of going low plastic in a high-plastic world, and how to clean without a hit of harmful toxins.
You don’t need to be a fulltime homesteader with a cupboard full of organic linens to go low tox. Start small, switching or ditching one nasty at a time, and enjoy the process as a positive one for you and the planet.


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  1. kim says:

    But so many of your books are wrapped in plastic! :(

    1. Kinokuniya Australia says:

      It’s unfortunately to have to do that, but the alternative would be books getting damaged from customers browsing :(
      We try to shrink-wrap only what is necessary, and some books also do arrive to us already shrink-wrapped.
      We’re constantly looking for ways to be better, whilst still being able to provide beautiful books to our customers!