Considering the damaging effect that plastic bags are believed to have on the environment, environmentalists have been advocating against their use for a long time. As a result of this, three cities in Oregon have already banned the use of plastic bags. However, environmentalists are pushing for a ban in other cities as well.
Spreading the Boundaries of Plastic Ban by Using Cheap Reusable Bags
While three cities in Oregon – Salem, Bend, and Ashland, have already imposed a ban on the use of plastic bags, environmentalists are busy working towards getting more local governments to take the same step targeted at making our environment a cleaner and healthier one.
However, scientific research conducted recently states that plastic bags occupy less space in landfills in comparison to disposable paper bags and reusable bags. In addition, the production process for making plastic bags uses up less water and releases a smaller quantity of greenhouses gases. As per this study, plastic bags are a safer bet than reusable and disposable bags. However, environmentalists refuse to see sense in this and continue working towards a ban on plastic bags.
According to a University of Oregon, Chemistry professor – David Tyler, plastic bags leave a negligible carbon footprint in comparison to more risky issues faced by the environment.
As stated by John Charles, the President and CEO of Cascade Policy Institute – Portland, a ban on plastic bags is a step in the wrong direction and no environmental good can be achieved out of it.
Todd Wynn of the American Legislative Exchange Council (energy, environment, and agricultural task force Director), stated that the issue of littering needed to be dealt with as it was the main cause of all plastic bag related problems. Charles and Wynn added that fewer bag alternatives would certainly increase costs and put off customers.
According to the State Director for Environment Oregon – Sarah Higginbotham, the main problem lies in the fact that plastic bags are non-biodegradable and the damage caused by them, when they make their way into water systems, is immeasurable.
The environment group has travelled across the state with a signature campaign to advocate a ban on plastic bags. A man dressed in plastic bags accompanies them wherever they go.
Why Cheap Reusable Bags Are Better
Cheap reusable bags are a better option than plastic bags due to several reasons. In comparison to single-use plastic bags and disposable paper bags, reusable bags can be made of recycled material and can be used repeatedly, for a minimum of seventy five uses. This minimizes the need for constant production of bags while reducing the consumption of raw material and energy required during the production process. Reusable bags can be further recycled, proving to be more advantageous.
Reusable bags also prove to be cheaper in the long run since they can be used time and again. In addition, they are more durable than plastic bags and are therefore a safer option when it comes to carrying heavy groceries.