Local Limelight: Weeklyish Articles Of Interest
Plastic Bags are a Menace to Society.
By: Christy Mezzanatto, Co-Owner of Green Chic Bag Co.
It is estimated that an individual uses as many as 316 plastic bags each year! These bags end up in landfills and waterways causing havoc on the environment, because they do not biodegrade. Plastic bags break down into smaller and smaller toxic particles that get reintroduced into the environment.
San Francisco became the first in the nation last year to ban petroleum-based plastic bags in large grocery stores. In France, supermarket chains have begun shying away from giving away plastic bags and German stores must pay a recycling fee if they wish to offer them. Ireland's surcharge on bags imposed in 2003 has been credited with sharply reducing demand. China has also banned flimsy plastic shopping bags and forces stores to charge for others.
Is banning the answer? I am not completely sure. I find sometimes it is easier to get people to jump on your bandwagon with some motivation. Make the idea of doing things that are earth friendly also fun!
People are often motivated by money. Did you know that many grocery stores will actually give you money off of your purchase for bringing in your own bags? Here are just some of the stores we know will pay you:
* WinCo Stores $.06 per bag
* Safeway Stores $.03 per bag
* Fred Meyer Stores $.05 per bag
* Target Stores $0.05 per bag
* Whole Foods $.05 per bag
* New Seasons $.05 per bag
* Twenty Third Avenue Books $.05 per bag (discount only valid using Green Chic Bag Co. bags)
This movement is moving our way. Seattle is another major American city that implemented change to discourage the use of paper and plastic shopping bags by requiring grocery, drug and convenience stores to charge 20 cents per bag. In a related action, the City Council also banned plastic foam food and drink containers. Both laws went into effect Jan. 1.
It is time for us to embrace the changes for the Greener good around us. I am hoping that those around us will agree also and follow the old saying “If you can’t beat ‘em, JOIN ‘EM”.