Bring your own bags when you go shopping

on Tuesday, 17 May 2016.

Cloth Preferred

Keep a supply in the trunk so they are always available. If you forget to bring them into the store or they were left at home, load your purchases into the car and once you get home pack everything into reusable bags to more conveniently move them into the house.

Facts about plastic bags:The average American family takes home 1,500 plastic bags a year (Natural Resources Defense Council). Americans use and throw away 100 billion plastic bags every year, which requires 12 million barrels of oil per year to manufacture. They can last anywhere from 20 to 1000 years. All plastic waste breaks down into smaller fragments which readily soak up toxins. It then contaminates soil, waterways, and animals upon digestion (Earth911). 10% of the plastic produced every year worldwide winds up in the ocean. 70% of which finds its way to the ocean floor, where it will likely never degrade (United Nations). So much plastic waste is accumulating in the oceans that it is estimated that between 2040 and 2050 the weight of plastic waste in the ocean will exceed the weight of all the living creatures in the sea.

For those who try to justify their use of plastic bags by recycling: according to the Clean Air Council it costs $4000 to recycle 1 ton of plastic bags, but the recycled product can be sold for only $32.00. As a result only about 1% of our plastic bags are actually recycled.

By the way South AfricaUgandaSomaliaRwanda BotswanaKenya & Ethiopia all have total bans in place. China has banned plastic bags since June 1st 2008. India and Bangladesh introduced strict bans in 2002.

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