To date, their biggest success has proven to be the State of California--no surprise there--which has now banned plastic shopping bags. Previously, 100 of California's municipalities had banned the bags. But, now, it's illegal for stores to use them anywhere in the Golden State.
However, doing so flies in the face of some inconvenient facts, according to research published by the Reason Foundation:
- Propaganda: The ban will reduce litter.
- Truth: Plastic bags are <1% of all visible litter and 0.4% of solid waste. In addition, plastic shopping bag bans reduce neither the volume of litter nor the cost of waste disposal. For example, after the ban was implemented, the amount of litter was not reduced. The stormy petrels' claim is a bit overblown, no? Looking at the big picture, reducing "some" of a "little" is pretty inconsequential, no?
So much for that one. Now try this one:
- Propaganda: Using alternative bags--for example, paper and reusable bags --is "environmentally friendly."
- Truth: It takes more energy and water to produce those alternative bags, which increases greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, if those reusable bags aren't washed frequently, they pose health hazards--for example, they spread bacteria. However, If consumers wash those alternative bags, the result would be that reusable bags consume 140% the amount of water that plastic bags do. That isn't very environmentally friendly, now, is it?
Despite the facts, those who worship at the altar of environmentalism continue to tout the virtues of alternative bags. Why? Facts don't matter to Mother Gaia's disciples. Perhaps those who worship at the altar of environmentalism should "rebrand" themselves as this generation's "Flat Earth Society."
Let the discussion begin...
To read Reason Foundation's findings, click on the following link:
"Plastic Bag Ban Hurts California's Economy."