While some bags are recycled, most end up landfills, where they can blow away and end up in creeks and rivers. Many ultimately end up flowing to the sea and harming wildlife and marine animals. Reducing the amount of ALL kinds of disposable plastic we use is one of the easiest ways to help the Earth and its creatures. For more information about how to reduce plastic waste, check out plasticpollutioncoalition.org.
(*Bring Your Own Bag) Something exciting is afoot here in California: A new push to ban single-use retail plastic bags in favor of more Earth-friendly choices. Past efforts have met resistance from bag manufacturers and retailers, but a new State Senate bill (SB 405) is being officially supported by the California Grocers Association. And that’s a big deal! The retailers’ group supports the ban because they say it would provide “consistency and predictability” for consumers, compared to the more than 70 local bans in place now that the group says can be confusing to shoppers and expensive for retailers to comply with. If the bill becomes law, stores would phase out the bags by January 1, 2015. Shoppers would bring their own reusable bags or pay about 10 cents each for paper. (Hawaii became the first – and still the only – state to ban the bags outright, in 2012.)