May Be Considered at April 16 Meeting
The debate about single use plastic bags has come to Scotts Valley after a group of youngsters (under the tutelage of Save Our Shores) presented their concerns to the City Council. Various viewpoints have been expressed in Letters to the Editor in the Press Banner and the Sentinel, and one hardy “adventurer” (Haig walked up Carbonero Creek and photographed 1,000 images of predominantly plastic trash as he walked the creek!! (Check them out through the link his letter to the Editor ).
While there is a strong effort to regulate such bags at the State level, we hope that Scotts Valley will join the County and City of Santa Cruz in restricting their availability. Catherine O’Kelly and Tai Stills, VWC Environmental Committee members and SV residents, are planning to share insights into the problems the bags cause at the Scotts Valley meeting. For information about the effort to pass State legislation, read this article from Californians Against Waste:
No more single-use plastic grocery bags in California by 2016!
At one point, California stores were distributing more than 30 billion plastic shopping bags annually.
Over the last decade, we’ve cut that problem in half:
Many consumers are already voluntarily saying no to plastic and bringing their own reusable bags;
And to date, more than 90 cities and counties have an adopted local ordinance phasing out single-use plastic bags.
With today’s announcement of a new bill co-authored by Senator Alex Padilla and Senator Kevin de León, we begin the process of phasing out the 13 billion single-use plastic bags that continue to be generated annually.
The measure would ban single-use plastic grocery bags (also referred to in the industry as ‘T-shirt’ bags) in grocery stores by July of 2015, and expand to cover other markets, convenience stores, and drug stores one year later. Similar to the local ordinances that have banned single-use plastic grocery bags, recycled paper and reusable bags would still be available for purchase (10 cents minimum).
With this proposal, we can now look ahead to a day when there will be no more plastic grocery bags in our neighborhoods, in our rivers, on our beaches, or stuck up in the trees and on fences.
It will also mean:
We have a Life Cycle Analysis that shows that after as few as 8 ‘reuses’ the reusable bags that will be made in this California factory, by these California workers, will have a smaller footprint than a single-use plastic bag.
And we also know, from the plastics industry’s own study, that the production of their single-use plastic bags generates more greenhouse gas emissions than an equivalent volume of paper bags.
This will mean lower costs for consumers and taxpayers:
So this is a big deal.
But the details on this one are pretty important as well.
Senator Kevin de León has brought to the table a very innovative proposal that’s aimed at transitioning existing California plastic bag manufacturers and jobs to making a California reusable bag that is made from recycled material and is fully recyclable–can’t say that for a lot of the current generation of reusable bags made in China! Find out more by clicking here.