It's estimated that a trillion single-use plastic bags are used each year – that's nearly 2 million bags per minute – so, there's no wonder why some U.S. cities are beginning to wake up and hop on the eco-friendly bandwagon.

In fact, just this week, San Diego became the 150th municipality in California to eliminate single-use plastic bags in certain stores and food retailers. Bravo, California! But it's not just the Golden State that's shining, Austin, Chicago, Seattle, and Cambridge, Massachusetts have also banned plastic bags.

This news comes in perfect time with Plastic Free July which aims to raise awareness of the problems associated with the amount of single-use disposable plastic in our lives. It challenges people to refuse all single-use plastic or try to avoid plastic bags, water bottles, takeaway coffee cups, and straws.

Yet, despite these recent efforts to reduce plastic usage, many people still use plastic shopping bags every day. If only they knew how easy it is to make the switch from disposable bags that clog our landfills to eco-friendly, reusable bags.

Below are three eco-friendly alternatives to plastic bags:

1. Lunch Bags

Whether you're packing a lunch for school, work or even a weekend picnic, it can be easy to grab a plastic bag. But there are some “cooler” alternatives out there (literally). Take these eco-friendly cooler bags for instance. They're not only reusable, but they'll also keep your food well insulated.  

2. Trash Bags

Plastic bags have been estimated to take 500 to 1,000 years to decompose in landfills, and since all of our garbage gets thrown in trash bags that end up in landfills, it makes the most sense to switch to biodegradable garbage bags. Don't you think?

3. Shopping Bags

From organic cotton bags to canvas bags and folding totes, there are a ton of stylish alternatives to choose from that will help you say “no thank you” to plastic bags at stores.

Do you have any suggestions for eco-friendly alternatives to plastic bags? If so, we'd love to hear from you in the comments below.