Consideration Shoppers: Do You Really Need That Plastic Bag?

“The plastic bag is an approved element of Canada’s shopping lifestyle, but it should not be. Every single 12 months we use over nine billion plastic purchasing baggage in Canada. Which is seventeen,000 bags a moment.”

– Greener Footprints

Canadians use nine-fifteen billion plastic purchasing bags each 12 months

To get a feel for just how several bags that actually is, image this: if we tied 9 billion luggage together, they would circle the earth 55 instances (Greener Footprints).

Holy Dinah!

Every single calendar year it truly is approximated among 500 billion and one trillion plastic baggage are utilised throughout the world. Though they were not widely utilised right up until the 1980s, their effect has presently been felt around the world.

A rapid stroll by means of your neighbourhood can frequently expose how pervasive plastic bags are when it will come to the difficulty of litter. Hanging from tree branches or tangled in hedges, plastic luggage have turn into a depressing fixture in city environmentally friendly areas like parks, schoolyards, and sporting activities fields. This kind of litter is not only unattractive it can also contribute to key environmental troubles.

Big buildups of discarded plastic baggage can clog drainage methods and add to key floods. This kind of flooding caused widespread destruction in Bangladesh in 1988 and 1998. Manila has also been vulnerable to flooding as a outcome of plastic-bag clogged sewers. In 2009, much more than 80% of the Philippines’ funds was submerged. Hundreds ended up killed and 1000’s much more were still left homeless when complete neighbourhoods have been swept away.

Other aquatic chaos developed by plastic baggage has verified lethal to people who reside in the h2o as properly.

Roughly 100,000 whales, seals, turtles and other marine animals are killed every single 12 months by plastic luggage, which can strangle their victims or cause them to starve to loss of life, in accordance to Planet Ark, an intercontinental environmental team. A lifeless gray whale that washed ashore in Seattle in 2010 was discovered to have more than twenty plastic luggage in its stomach.

A 2012 College of British Columbia study identified that 93 for each cent of beached northern fulmars (migratory seabirds related to the albatross) had bellies complete of plastic – a sizeable enhance from the very last time they were examined, in 1980.

In simple fact, plastic packaging is accumulating so speedily, it is predicted to outnumber fish in the sea by 2050, according to a latest report by the Globe Economic Discussion board.


In accordance to the David Suzuki Basis, “Couple of plastic luggage are recycled. Most are utilised for a quick time to carry groceries, and then probably re-utilized as rubbish bags or to wrap pet poop just before ending up in the landfill or the ocean. Some men and women argue that, because they make up about one for each cent of the quantity of squander in landfills, we shouldn’t fear. But Flozzo for each cent of the substantial amounts of what’s in landfills is a good deal, specifically because plastic doesn’t biodegrade.”

Most plastic baggage are produced from polyethylene and can get hundreds of years to decompose.

But measures are getting taken to decrease the environmental footprint of plastic bags. Use of plastic luggage is either restricted or entirely banned in above a quarter of the world’s nations.

China, Italy, Bangladesh, South Africa, and components of Australia have banned plastic bags outright, whilst municipal bans exist in elements of India, Mexico, Britain, the U.S., and Canada.

Plastaxes – taxes on plastic bags paid out by buyers – and new recycling rules have also been introduced in to support deal with the concern.

In February 2016, Walmart Canada commenced phasing out a single-use buying bags at Canadian Walmart stores. In place of these, consumers will be presented discounted reusable luggage for 25 cents. But plastic luggage will nonetheless be presented for 5 cents in an effort to lessen the amount of solitary-use bags they distribute.

In my neck of the woods (Sidney, British Columbia), the grocery retailer I regular isn’t going to have plastic grocery baggage but they do offer single-use brown paper baggage – or, of system, you can use reusable grocery luggage or a reusable cardboard box, particularly created to keep the fat of groceries. My private preference is a box and several reusable baggage.

Although my community is supposedly quite environmentally-pleasant, I would have to say that, primarily based on my private observations, the bulk of the grocery shop consumers even now choose the one-use brown paper bag over the reusable bag and/or box. And I am not certain why. Convenience, maybe?

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