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Environment California Wants Fee On Plastic Grocery Bags

Audio

Aired 1/18/10

An environmental group is calling for a fee on plastic bags at grocery stores in California. The goal is to encourage the use of reusable bags.

An environmental group is calling for a fee on plastic bags at grocery stores in California. The goal is to encourage the use of reusable bags.

Environment California says people in the state use 19 billion plastic bags each year. Many of the bags end up in the ocean, streams and other waterways.

Dan Jacobson with Environment California says most of the plastic will not break down or biodegrade for several centuries.

"What we're seeing is a real marine disaster," said Jacobson. "The bags that we use to bring our groceries home are ending up killing thousands of seabirds, turtles and dolphins throughout the Pacific Ocean."

He says a small fee on plastic bags might encourage more people to bring reusable bags.

"If we do that we're convinced that people will start bringing their own bags like they do in countries all over the world," said Jacobson.

Legislation to ban styrofoam containers and to require reusable bags at grocery stores have failed in the state legislature, but Jacobson says he hopes a grassroots effort will convince lawmakers to approve a plastic bag fee this year.

Comments

Avatar for user 'BBegent'

BBegent | January 18, 2010 at 9:25 a.m. ― 4 years, 8 months ago

Completely support the taxation of plastic and other products that are killing our ocean. California needs to catch up with the rest of the world regarding the protection and restoration of our beautiful environment.

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