Ban Would Eliminate Plastic Bags in California Grocery Stores
A proposed bill by state California Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) aims to ban disposable plastic shopping bags in grocery stores and pharmacies starting January 1, 2015. Shoppers would be encouraged to bring their own reusable grocery bags or pay a fee, probably about 10 cents per paper bag used. The proposal would extend to convenience and liquor stores starting on January 1, 2016.
Plastic shopping bags are such a ubiquitous part of everyday life, but most people do not know the full story concerning these disposable hazards. From the manufacturing process through disposal, plastic bags can cause a lot of harm. While reusable bags are a great solution, they do require some maintenance to insure they are clean and safe.
Last year 25 billion paper cups were thrown away just in the United States. This number may seem staggering, but think back to how many disposable coffee cups you saw this morning and how many to-go cups you saw at work after lunch. Disposable cups are a common sight and they easily pile up in our landfills. Many paper cups are difficult to impossible to recycle – the plastic coating that allows the cup to hold fluids is great for preventing leaks, but it also thwarts any effort to recycle the cup. Plastic cups are not much better since people typically toss them in the trash when they are done instead of recycling them.