St. Croix County not yet Ready to Go Plastic-free
March 16, 2014 by
The plastic bag ban proposal made by a member of the board of St. Croix County seems to have hit a standstill. An ‘educational approach’ was instead recommended by the Community Development Department of the county. This means the county staff may have to working with the local retailers to create awareness about recycling of plastic bags. They will also have to educate consumers about reusing plastic bags offered at local grocery stores and supermarkets.
The resolution to ban plastic bags was proposed by county board member, Hudson Supervisor Buck Malick. This resolution would have banned the distribution of free plastic bags by retailers at grocery stores. He had several points to back his proposal which included the following:
- Plastic bags are hazardous for the environment and are non-biodegradable
- Most customers are aware about eco-friendly practices and do not mind switching to the concept of wholesale reusable bags
- The retailers have to bear the cost of the plastic bags
- Successful implementation at the local level can help in the passing of a state-wide legislation
Ellen Denzer of Croix County Is Not in Support of Ban
Ellen Denzer, Community Development Director, said that currently, many of the local stores have taken positive steps on their own by providing plastic bag recycling bins. She believes that complete ban on plastic bags could possibly have a negative impact on the eco-friendly activity voluntarily undertaken by them. She added that local businesses near Minnesota could also potentially suffer if the ban gets implemented.
Denzer is of the opinion that a state-wide ban of a product usually stems out of issues regarding safety of public or a concern regarding the environment condition. But as of now there is no documentation or report that gives sufficient evidence that any of these two issues are at stake. So there is no need of a ban presently, according to her.
Wholesale Reusable Bags May Have to Wait in Croix County
Jon Tulman, a recycling specialist had a brief meeting with the operators of the local municipal who look after the wastewater management and treatment. He reported that currently there were no noteworthy concerns regarding the use of plastic bags. A Fisheries biologist at the Department of Natural Resources, Bob Heise mentioned that there is presently no danger to the aquatic life or fisheries of the county due to plastic bags.