The Majestic Plastic Bag

on Thursday, 26 August 2010. Posted in N21 Community

 

WRAP, the government waste reduction agency released figures yesterday showing our use of plastic carrier figures is falling, with a 35% fall in bags issued by the supermarket chains in 2009. We are now using 6.5 billion plastic bags a year, compared with 10.9 billion in 2006. Whilst this is a commendable achievement, showing that people are starting to change their behaviour, this is still a massive number of bags, the majority of whom are destined for land fill.

 

All over the world governments are looking at ways of dealing with the scourge of  plastic bags. The Republic of Ireland introduced a plastic bag tax back in 2002, Bangladesh and some African nations have sought to ban plastic bags because they clog their fragile sewer systems. The Welsh Assembly is introducing a 7p tax on plastic bags from March 2011.

 

Modbury in South Devon became the first town in Europe to ban plastic bags in 2008.  The Californian Senate is preparing to vote to become the first US state to outlaw plastic bags. This short video, has been produced by an environmental group Heal The Bay lobbying for the ban. Narrated by Jeremy Irons, “The Majestic Plastic Bag” follows a “clever and illustrious” plastic bag on its migration from grocery story to its final home — the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Along the way, it will tangle with “one of nature’s most deadly killers – the teacup yorkie” as well as “hungry sea life” that feeds on plastic.

 

Heal the Bay says 19 billion bags are used in California each year, creating nearly 123,000 tons of waste and costing up to $3.23 billion each year in taxes used for clean up efforts. It is a poignant reminder of the environmental damage caused by plastic bags.

 

 

 

 

 

WRAP, the government waste reduction agency released figures yesterday showing our use of plastic carrier figures is falling. Whilst this is a commendable achievement, showing that people are starting to change their behaviour, this is still a massive number of bags, the majority of whom are destined for land fill.

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