More inland communities are taking action to reduce the plastic bag pollution that litters our environment, clogs our storm drain systems, and costs millions in local government dollars for cleanup each year.
Yesterday evening, the City of Palm Springs became the largest in Riverside County to approve an ordinance restricting single-use plastic grocery bags (Desert Hot Springs adopted the first ban in the county on March 18, 2014). According to media reports, this was a unanimous approval by City Council.
The City's ordinance bans plastic grocery bags and places a ten cent charge per paper bag to incentivize reusable or reduced bag use. Once adopted, it will be effective in large stores starting in November, with full implementation to all other retail stores expected by next May. The ordinance is based on the Coachella Valley Association of Governments' model bag ordinance, which will allow jurisdictions in the area to work towards a regional solution.
Other inland communities that have recognized plastic bag pollution is more than a coastal issue and have banned plastic bags include Davis, South Lake Tahoe, and Truckee. The City of Sacramento and others are poised to follow suit in the next few months.
There are currently 104 cities or counties covered under an adopted bag ban. See the full list.