San Francisco's and Oakland's recent banning of plastic bags has been receiving international attention. The bans come as part of a global awareness movement over the problems of plastic bags, reports the New York Times. One indication of the groundswell of support for plastic waste reduction: the proliferation of reusable bags, and the current international fashion craze over designer reusable totes. The Times reports that despite California's new laws, the most stringent bag requirements are found abroad:
For all these efforts, though, the United States is far behind other parts of the world in addressing concerns about plastic bags. In places like South Africa, Zanzibar, Scandinavia and Uganda, the use of such bags has been reduced or eliminated by banning or taxing them, by charging for them in stores, by giving incentives to customers who provide their own bags and by selling inexpensive reusable bags made of recycled plastic or cloth.
CAW and Plastic Bags:
- Learn about AB 2449, the CAW-sponsored bill which went into effect July 1 and requires all large grocery markets and pharmacies to accept plastic bags back for recycling free of charge, as well as offer reusable bags for purchase.