Photo: Courtesy of Hansel From Basel.
For some cities in California (ahem, S.F. and Los Angeles), plastic bags have been outlawed for some time now. Hey, better reason for us to break out the cute totes. Governor Jerry Brown just signed legislation ruling that single-use plastic bags will be phased out of large grocery and convenience stores by 2016, with customers getting charged 10 cents for a paper version. We’d be lying if we said we weren’t having a proud moment right now.
"This bill is a step in the right direction — it reduces the torrent of plastic polluting our beaches, parks, and even the vast ocean itself," Brown explained. "We're the first to ban these bags, and we won't be the last."
Unfortunately, not everyone is as excited as we are about the amazing news. Manufacturers complain that this will impact job creation and are issuing a referendum on the law — even though the bill includes a $2 million loan for companies to shift operations and start making reusable ones. Meanwhile, a group called the American Progressive Bag Alliance calls the bill "a back room deal between the grocers and union bosses to scam California consumers out of billions of dollars without providing any public benefit — all under the guise of environmentalism."
Regardless of what side you stand on, there’s no denying this is a step in the right direction for the environment. Next up? Water bottles.