Earlier this month Oregon’s bag bill, SB 536, failed to build enough support in the legislature to pass. The bill would have banned plastic bags in stores if specified recycling levels were not achieved, and additionally would have placed a 5 cent fee on paper bags, according to a Plastics News article. If successful, Oregon would have also made history with the first statewide bag bill in the nation.
Despite this news, supporters remain optimistic and have refocused efforts to a city bag ban in Portland in the meantime. Now that the bill has died in committee, legislative efforts can be consolidated to local bans throughout the state.
In California, more and more cities are considering plastic bag ordinances in their communities despite opposition from plastic bag manufacturers. The Save the Plastic Bag Coalition attempts to fight the growing tide of local bans with litigation threats.
Additionally the plastics industry is suing ChicoBag in the US Circuit Court in South Carolina. The lawsuit was brought against Chico Bag by three plastic bag manufacturers (Hilex Poly, Superbag Operating Ltd. and Advance Polybag), who claim the reusable bag company made "false and/or misleading description of fact in interstate commercial advertising", according to the complaint filed by the companies listed above.
CAW supports local bag ban efforts in the absence of a statewide solution, and urges local governments, and ChicoBag, to continue the fight against industry. To keep up to date on plastic bag issues, visit our blog regularly.