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Oregon may ban plastic bags

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High Five
Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Proposed legislation led by Sen. Mark Hass and Sen. Jason Atkinson aims to make plastic bags illegal in Oregon, as well as charging 5 cents for paper bags.

The proposed legislation only affects larger businesses, who would keep the revenue from the paper bag charge.

In Portland, Mayor Sam Adams has been working on a plan to reduce disposable bag use for three years. In 2008, as a city commissioner, he floated the idea of charging a fee on plastic bags but dropped it last year, citing the recession. Members of a "Ban the Bag" coalition plan to hold a rally at City Hall on Wednesday to pressure city leaders to take another run at the issue.

Hass and Atkinson, meanwhile, may have public opinion on their side. The California State Assembly is considering what would be the first statewide ban on plastic bags. About a dozen U.S. cities have adopted prohibitions, following San Francisco's lead in 2007.

Read more at OregonLive.com.

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0 #1 Following San Francisco is NOTHING to brag about!Lisa 2010-07-13 12:03:21
Good grief, in the midst of dreadful unemployment, stagnant business growth and seemingly ever increasing businesses being shuttered, our representatives have nothing better to do than worry about GROCERY BAGS?

How about that good old fashioned concept of rewarding good behavior? With more groceries giving refunds for bringing bags that practice has grown substantially. Like the bottle bill, a small incentive reduced to near zero the discarding of cans and bottles along the roads.

As to following San Francisco, their latest ridiculous proposal to ban sodas and pet sales just makes that city seem even more removed from reality. We should hardly want to be more like that fever swamp of bad ideas.
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0 #2 BAN ON PLASTIC BAGS IS RIDICULOUSCorey 2010-07-14 17:41:26
I never buy small trash bags, as the store bags pull double-duty, after the groceries come out. So for every plastic grocery bag banned, I will now have to buy a plastic trash bag (thicker, and will end up in the same landfill as the box they came in).
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0 #3 AmbivalentCharlcie 2010-08-02 16:24:04
Because they are heavier it costs more in trucking expense and that carbon footprint for a store to buy paper bags than plastic. The big chain stores I frequent recycle plastic bags.

Wouldn’t it depend on what is used to carry groceries in – what it’s made of and how many bags it saves over its useful life?

It’d be nice to have an analysis of the real environmental costs rather than what “feels” right.
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