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Ban the Bag! California's effort to ban the use of single-use plastic bags

Over 19 billion plastic bags are used annually in California, and constitute one of the largest forms of urban litter pollution. Urban litter pollution is the primary component of marine litter, which feeds into the North Pacific Gyre - also known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is often described as a 'plastic soup' or toilet that doesn't flush, where plastic particulates outnumber plankton. In many areas in the ocean plastic particulates outnumber plankton 2.5 to 1, and in the North Pacific Gyre, the number is much higher, somewhere around 25 to 1. This chain of pollution has detrimental implications for the marine life. They eat the plastic particulates confusing them with food, causing serious health problems and often death. Animals like jellyfish and birds can also get stuck within the bags and other plastic waste causing them to suffocate. The negative effects of plastics in our oceans are endless, which is why we need to cut the greatest contributor, single-use plastic bags. 

AB 1998 is a bill currently working through senate that proposes banning single-use plastic bags from large retail outlets in California, including grocery stores and pharmacies. The bill, written by Santa Monica Assembly Member Julia Brownley, has passed the preliminary votes, however, senate still has the final word. Paper bags will be available for a small price, about five cents a piece, but the goal of the bill is to promote the use of reusable bags - Chico Bags are a great example. I have been using reusable bags for the last few years and I really love them. It's a fun way express your individuality by building a collection of cool, unique reusable bags while also helping the environment. Many stores now give a discount for customers who bring their own bags - Trader Joe's even offers a raffle. There has never been a better time to promote reusable bags. 

You can help get this bill passed. Email and Call your senator today and tell them to protect our oceans by banning the bag. 

Check out the official fact sheet for AB 1998 for more info.



It's too bad this legislation

It's too bad this legislation hadn't  come before Senate long ago....but I guess now is better than later!  I am sure most of us reading this have been using our reusable bags for awhile now, and can't imagine using the alternative.  It's always mind boggling to see the casual one time use of plastic bags by others! Great article! Lets BAN THE BAG!!!


YA, BAN THAT BAG!! I too have

YA, BAN THAT BAG!! I too have been using reusable bags for a while, and I find them to be a great alternative. Very informative article Emily.


Way to go!! Don't let this opportunity to reduce the excessive waste that California uses and to help protect our beautiful, yet dying oceans. 

Great article, Emily.

:) Ally

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