San Francisco To Expand Ban on Plastic Bags

by , 02/09/12

san francisco, plastic bag ban, green design, sustainable design, environmental issues, waste reduction, san francisco plastic bag ban, sf plastic bag ban, expanded plastic bag ban, environmental destruction

Almost five years ago, San Francisco became the first American city to ban plastic shopping bags from supermarkets and chain pharmacies. Now the city is poised to expand that ban to all retail stores and restaurants within the city limits. Only certain products, like newspapers, fish, poultry, fresh flowers, and bulk goods are exempted from the ban. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to expand the ban, and it’s expected to be officially approved next week.

san francisco, plastic bag ban, green design, sustainable design, environmental issues, waste reduction, san francisco plastic bag ban, sf plastic bag ban, expanded plastic bag ban, environmental destruction

Every year, roughly 100 billion plastic shopping bags are handed out in the US, and only a tiny fraction of them are recycled. The rest of them end up in landfills, where they take about 1,000 years to break down, or they blow away and are reduced to tiny plastic particles in the oceans and on land. Plastic bag bans are a way to combat that cycle by encouraging shoppers to bring their own reusable bags.

When San Francisco passed its initial plastic bag ban in 2007, it was groundbreaking. But since then several other American cities, including Portland, Seattle, and San Jose have all banned plastic bags, and Austin and Los Angeles are currently mulling similar bans. In San Francisco, the new rules, which are set to take effect in October, don’t apply to just plastic; a 10-cent fee will be placed on all other types of bags (we’re looking at you, paper) handed out at checkout.

Via AP and SF Chronicle

Lead photo by Flickr user halflifehalflived

Second photo by Flickr user eflon

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3 Comments

  1. Brenda Robinson July 5, 2015 at 10:13 am

    We can leave the trees out of this as well. Carry a cloth shopping bag! There are SO many different styles to choose from – no excuse people, and ‘laziness’ does not count, nor does ‘indifference’, nor cost! You can get one from a friend who has extras, i.e. I have many of them. Or, ask for one for your birthday or Christmas present, or Eid gift or Dwallah gift. This is a universal problem and we need a universal solution. Peace, shalom, Namaste.

  2. Brenda Robinson July 5, 2015 at 10:09 am

    This is fantastic, all these cities banning the plastic bag! WAY TO GO! The rest of the world needs to follow your lead! I am working on Toronto, Ontario CANADA to do likewise. I am sick of seeing plastic bags flying by my balcony like a bird, only to land in the big tree and get stuck there permanently! Only a fireman could reach it. Not good!

  3. caeman February 9, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    Why a 10 cent fee on paper bags? They are biodegradable and are made from replanted/farmed trees, not virgin forests.

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