Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Information on Plastic Bags

I was very please over the Christmas Holidays to hear that Seattle had passed a by-law to ban plastic bags.  Turns out they might take it to a vote, but we'll see what happens there. 

Just today several articles have wafted past my screen (okay, wafted is not actually a great word for it, but you know what I mean - I seen them!).  Some positive, some not so much so (depending on your views, I suppose). 

http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2011/12/28/defense-plastic-bag-bans

http://myplasticfreelife.com/2011/12/plastic-bag-manufacturer-misleads-public-about-recycling-rates-heres-the-truth/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

And to be balanced here is one that just thinks that the bans on plastic bags are a fad for us pinko leftists (have they seen the garbage out there?  I mean it's not a Chia Pet we're talking about here - bags are killing wildlife, decomposing into poisons that are infecting our food chain, clogging waterways and are the new tumbleweed in the streets of most cities.  AND THEY ARE UNNECESSARY.  But I guess it's just a FAD!).

http://blog.heritage.org/2011/12/23/seattle-succumbs-to-latest-eco-fad-bans-plastic-bags/

Here are the simple basics for me regarding plastic bags:

1.  plastic bags are not necessary - it is very easy to take reusables (and damn it, they aren't poisoned by germs - WASH them).  I'm not even sure why we need to put our garbage in plastic bags.  Why don't we put the garbage in the can, dump the can in the truck and dump the truck at the landfill?  Why the bags?  Dog poo?  Well, I know there are smaller (because if you use a grocery bag to collect poop, it's really over-doing it on the plastic, isn't it?), biodegradable bags that would save on plastic and decompose faster.

2.  Plastic is not recyclable - using that term is a misnomer.  Plastic is down-cyclable.  IF it gets recycled, it is turned into a different type of plastic and at the end of its life will end up in the landfill anyhow.

3.  Plastic bags will not decompose - at least not before all of us are long decomposed.

4.  Plastic bags do harm. 

So if something is harmful, won't go away, can't be recycled, and isn't necessary in the first place, WHY are some people so insistent on having them?  I saw "freedom" listed as a reason to keep the plastic bags.  People don't like to be told what to do.  They don't want their freedom to choose to use a plastic bag taken away.  Well, why don't we fill their stomachs with a few of these bags (like the whales and sea turtules who are dying from them) and see what they think of it. 

Is it short-sightedness?  Can people not understand the repercussions of their actions?  Or do they just not care? 

I can't figure it out.

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